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My Porchetta Pizza(s)

It’s been raining here in Los Angeles a bit lately.  Being hunkered down, I kept thinking about what I could make to eat.  Rain usually means make a stew!  I love stew in the rain.  It tastes better knowing it’s raining and cold outside and you are inside warming your body up as you enjoy a bowl of homemade stew.

But, my inner yearning this time kept bringing me to thoughts of roasting a porchetta.  Of course, I wanted to do it in my Primavera wood fired oven outside, but the rain said otherwise.  Something came up.  I got delayed on my plans and then the rain stopped, but my craving had only grown.

I made my first Porchetta and did so partly (half) in the Wood Fired Oven but, also, in the kitchen oven with the other half since it was too big to go on the WFO.  They both came out great!  The recipes I was pulling from basically called for a slow cook of 2.5 – 3 hours at 275-300 degrees.  This is what I love about cooking in a wood fired oven.  There’s no dial for 275 or 300 degrees!  Cooking like this requires a dance you have to engage in with the fire and with time.  With a small fire and some time management skills I got it to hold just over 300 degrees for the 3 hours and the resulting porchetta was delicious!

Pretty good results between my two ovens!

Left: Kitchen Oven. Right: Wood Fired Oven.

My Porchetta Pizza(s):

An amazing pizza topping! Why is it not a topping on every pizza menu?

When I ate the porchetta that night, I made a wicked sandwich.  I knew then that I had to follow that up and do some pizzas with this as well.  For the sandwich, I placed roasted eggplant on an artisan sandwich roll and then some sliced porchetta and sliced tomatoes. I then spread some Crushed Calabrian Chili Peppers on top of everything.  This had everything a great pizza should have.  What’s the difference really between a great sandwich and a great pizza?  Dough with something IN it vs dough with something ON it!   (Note: Sorry no pictures of the sandwich — I ate it before I remembered to take the shot!)

Here’s a link to a Wood Fired Porchetta sandwich we got to enjoy with David Bravdica, owner of the wildly popular Brava Pizzeria della Strada in Denver, Colorado.  Definitely check this out!  *Link

 

I made a few versions of my pizza with essentially the same ingredients, since I was experimenting.  The differences between them are subtle.  I don’t know what to say except that they were all amazing.  Here are the three variations of the Porchetta Pizzas I made:

Sauce – Porchetta – Pre-roasted with chopped up eggplant!

90 seconds after going in the oven…

 

Porchetta Pizza I (*Hold the Buffalo Mozzarella until after it comes out of the oven):

  •  Sauce – Bianco DiNapoli tomatoes with Peter’s Crushed Tomato Sauce recipe *Link
  •  Sliced Porchetta
  •  Roasted Eggplant
  •  Buffalo Mozz
  •  Tutto Calabria – Crushed Calabrian Chili Peppers
  •  Wild Baby Arugula

Finished with some chopped Calabrian Chili Oil and fresh wild arugula. I love how the cool mozz will slowly melt into the piping hot pizza!

 

Sauce the dough.  Add the Porchetta slices and roasted eggplant.  Into the oven.

When it comes out, break some of the Buffalo Mozzarella around the pizza and then drizzle some of the crushed Calabrian chilies around the pizza and top with some of the cool arugula.

Amazing!

 

 

 

 

Porchetta Pizza II (*Hold the sauce):

  •  Olive Oil
  •  Sliced Porchetta
  •  Roasted Eggplant
  •  Fresh Mozzarella
  • Crushed Calabrian Chili Peppers
  • Sliced Tomatoes
  • Wild Baby Arugula
  • Sea Salt

Nice and clean. At this point it’s a white pizza.

Added Calabrian chilis and oil…

Don’t sauce the dough!  Spread a little olive oil around the dough.  Add the Porchetta slices, roasted eggplant and fresh mozzarella.  Into the oven.

When it comes out, drizzle the Calabrian Chilis and it’s oil around the pizza.  Top with some of the wild Arugula and some cool sliced tomatoes.   Sprinkle a little sea salt on the top to finish.

Simple, yet delicious! Fresh cool tomatoes and arugula on top. The contrast between the hot dough, porchetta and cheese and the cool “salad” topping is wonderful!

Delicious!

The first one was great but this is incredible!  I love the cool tomatoes on top!

Porchetta Pizza III (*All in):

  • Sauce
  • Sliced Porchetta
  • Roasted Eggplant
  • Fresh Mozzarella
  • Calabrian Chili Peppers
  • Wild Baby Arugula

A more traditional way to do a pizza – all in up front…

Nicely finished with some of the fresh baby arugula which adds a nice peppery bite.

Sauce – Porchetta – Roasted Eggplant – Mozz.  Into the oven.  Finish with the chilis and baby Arugula.

This was great too!  It’s quite similar to the first one, but the mozz is put on before the bake.

To me, the one that was the most interesting was the second one because the cool sliced tomatoes, added at the end, made it the most unique.  But, they were all truly delicious.  It’s fun to see how how changing small things, like “when,” or “where” you place or layer the ingredients on a pizza affects just how truly different the results can be!

My parting thoughts?  Make PORCHETTA at home and start requesting that your favorite pizzerias add this to their menu!

 

 

Enjoy!

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