Thursday, January 09, 2014

Sourdough Pizza? Yes!

Photo courtesy of Angelo's Pizza
Danny DiGiampietro has been a bread jobber -- a route-man delivering bread from Sarcone's and other bakeries to sandwich shops and other eateries (including Tommy DiNic's) -- for years. But his true love is the baking of bread and its sidekicks. For about a year he ran a small bakery in South Philly while maintaining his route, where he also toyed a bit with pizza-making. For a variety of reasons, the bakery didn't work out, though not because of any flaws in his product. DiNic's only switched to Sarcone's after Danny's closed shop.

Late last year Danny opened a new venture across the river in Haddonfield: Angelo's Pizza, 122 N. Haddon Ave. The menu is simple: pizza, cheese steaks, chicken steaks, fries, salads and escarole soup.

She Who Must Be Obeyed and I stopped by today and were blown away by the pizza. She went for the pepperoni, I opted for sausage. Instead of using crumbled meat, Danny slices the sausage in thin lengths to adorn the pie. The pepperoni is cut in the usual rounds. He uses fresh mozzarella and/or high quality regular mozzarella, depending on the type of pie ordered. And after coming out of the oven he tops most with a little fresh grating cheese.

The crust is thin, crispy and delicate and is made from sourdough. It's what Danny's pies are all about.

I never thought of fermented dough for pizza, but it works. Indeed, sourdoughs are hardly unknown in Italian baking. Danny takes it easy on the tartness, so the sourdough doesn't call attention to itself, but when you bite into the unadorned puffy crust on the pie's margins you will detect a slight tang that complements rather than competes with toppings.

What makes it even more unique is that Danny didn't begin with a commercial sourdough starter. He set out flour mixed with water and let the local Haddonfield yeasts do their thing. Works for me.

He's selling a lot of cheese steaks, too. Danny's picky so he uses prime beef. He's also cooking long hots, which can adorn the steaks or the pizza.

You can watch a cheesy video of Danny at work here.

(Full disclosure: I got to know Danny from hanging out at the Reading Terminal Market when he was making deliveries to DiNic's and consider him a foodie friend.)

No comments:

Post a Comment