If you’re interested in a Sicilian pizza recipe “Authentic”, you’re in the right place! Growing up all over Brooklyn I was always looking for a good Sicilian! I went all over bay ridge, park slope. kings highway. You name it. My favorite was Lenny’s pizza on 5th. avenue.
Now were going back 30 years ago. Since then, I have worked in over 30 pizza places and had 5 of my own! So in this post i will go over something i am fairly passionate about. “Sicilian Pizza”
To begin with your’e going to need a Sicilian pan. Sicilian pans are usually 16 by 16 or 12 by 18. Here’s one i would recommend. If you’re really serious about making Authentic Sicilian i would pick it up. Tight for cash and cant buy one? Look around in your home and see what ya have. Do you have a baking sheet with a one inch lip? If so, you’re in business.
The Dough is essential in this recipe. The right weight of the dough based on the size of your pan. For a 12 by 18 pan i usually go about 2 1/2 ponds. For a 16 by 16 i would recommend 3 pounds. In my experience this weight works perfectly. If you do not have a Sicilian pan measure what you do have and weigh the dough accordingly.
What is Sicilian Pizza?
I learned everything Sicilian as far as cooking, in Brooklyn. One of my mentors was named Danny Nortazano. A place on Church Avenue and Mc.Donald Avenue, Called John’s Pizza. A Sicilian Pizza is always airy in the middle. Light in terms of the dough. Never dense or doughy. The bottom is crisp with a light hint of olive oil. It’s usually about an inch and a half thick. To distinguish the Sicilian from the Neapolitan (Traditional slice) we use the dinner sauce. Quality Mozzarella, a light hint of olive oil and some dried Oregano. There ya have it! All the characteristics of a “Good Sicilian”!
How to Make Sicilian Pizza With Images
To begin this process there is some prep work involved. Hopefully you have purchased a pan, or have one your’e comfortable with using. You can go to the local pizzeria and actually purchase dough. If you do not have a kitchen aid mixer. However, if you’re like me and want to make your own, you will need the following.
- High Gluten Flour High Protein
- Sea Salt
- Yeast (Budweiser or dried)
- Cooking Oil I like sunflower
The time of the year is a factor. If it’s the summer when you’re reading this the dough will rise much sooner. If it’s the winter you wanna make the water temperature more toward’s the warmer side to help activate the yeast. This will cut the time down it will need to proof. I will provide a video on how to make pizza dough with a Kitchen Aid mixer to help with the right consistency.
Once the dough is made you will now begin the stretching. Take your pan and put an even coat of olive oil along the sides and the bottom of the pan. I dip the dough in flour on both sides and place it on the pan.
Sicilian Dough Preparation
Begin with stretching the dough and allow it to warm. Place the pan with the dough in an oven on top of the fridge, anywhere that’s a warm spot in the kitchen. Give it 20 minutes to soften and warm. This helps to work the dough and create a perfect crust. Once the dough has softened, dip your hand in flour lightly, and begin the stretching technique. I made a quick video below to demonstrate how to do this properly in less then 2 minutes. Watch and re watch till you’re confident!
Now that you have made it this far, add a light glaze of a good dinner sauce to the top. A good 4 to 6 ounces is plenty. At work i put on a glove and spread it out with my hands. Evenly all the way to the ends. Now lets let this puppy proof for a good 45 minutes to an hour. It should double in size before you are set to bake!
When you notice that it has doubled in size, now it’s time to bake the crust. Be certain that your oven is preheated to 450 degrees and place it on the center rack of your oven. Allow the Sicilian to brown sufficiently. It should be 75 to 80 percent cooked when coming out of your oven.
Now that your Sicilian pizza crust is prepared allow it to cool. This is where we dress up the pie! Get your dinner sauce ready about 6 ounces for this size Sicilian is plenty, Add your dinner sauce and Pecorino Romano then add your cheese. Feel free to add any toppings of choice. You can create a vegetarian Sicilian, a grandma, a meat lover’s. That’s entirely up to you. Once you’re done decorating your Sicilian back in the oven she goes.
What Makes a Good Sicilian?
You will notice the cheese melting and the edges begin to brown. Once the cheese begins to brown and your toppings are fairly cooked it’s ready. Remember this crust was precooked. It should not take longer then 15 minutes back in your oven even without toppings.
A good Sicilian as you can see is a fair amount of work. Quality ingredients and not taking any short cuts makes a good Sicilian. I have seen many pizzerias use saran wrap to make a Sicilian.
This tactic tho effective takes away from the natural process of allowing the dough to rise properly. Therefore affecting the final product of the crust. Believe me i have tried every way, this method produces the best results!
Sicilian pizza Tips and hacks
A few things to consider when trying to create the perfect Sicilian pizza recipe “Authentic”.
Know the size of the pan you’re using and use the appropriate weight based on the size. You do not want your Sicilian to be to dense.
Secondly, Use a good blend of cheeses. A whole milk and part skim combination generally works well. Stay away from already shredded cheeses. They tend to always be drier, losing valuable points in the overall product.
Thirdly, Use a commercial grade pan. Something thick and heavy. This really plays an important roll in your success. Again if you cant afford to purchase one, be certain it is not the thinnest one you have.
On a final note. This may seem a bit intimidating, but its really just practice. Try to focus on creating a uniform crust. The crust should be even all the way around, while you are working the dough. This will help it to cook evenly, brown evenly and overall just a better outcome. Watch the video a few times. It will definitely make a difference.
Any Questions? Leave a comment!