Over at Heated we've had pizza on the brain. Well, I guess it's safe to say that we usually have pizza on the brain, but this time of year it's different. It's peak tomato season in many parts of the country, and that means we have entered the small sliver of the calendar when you can make absurdly good fresh tomato pizzas. In fact, we've argued that for two months of the year, the BEST PIZZA IN THE COUNTRY is the native tomato pizza that's made in and around New Haven County. Rachel Wharton wrote the piece, and contends that this relatively under-the-radar regional specialty—a pizza topped with summer tomatoes from Connecticut, which has been producing excellent summer tomatoes since southern Italian immigrants began planting them there at least a century ago—is some of the very best pizza in the world. I used to live in New Haven, and she's right. This pizza is pretty perfect. Check out the story below.
Once you read it, you'll have a pizza craving. Guaranteed. From there you have two options: 1) Hop in a car and drive directly to New Haven. 2) On the off chance that's not possible, make your own margherita pizza (fresh tomato slices, mozzarella and basil). One of my favorite ways to cook this is on the grill; the crust gets beautifully crisp, and the heat of the grill concentrates the sweet flavor of the tomatoes. As home-cooked pizzas go, it's hard to beat. Plus, with all the money you save by not chartering a private jet to Connecticut, you can splurge on the best summer tomatoes you can find. The recipe is below.
In this social media-ed age, it’s hard to believe that one of the greatest regional specialties in the United States could live on for decades in relative obscurity. But such is the case with Connecticut’s native tomato pizza, made for just two months of the year in and around New Haven County.
This recipe starts with with pizza bianca: white pizza that has no sauce or cheese, just a sprinkle of coarse salt and rosemary and a drizzle of good-quality olive oil. It’s essentially bread — only way better. Serve this with dinner, as a vehicle for a spread or dip, or to make sandwiches.
But since it’s peak tomato season, also consider the margherita pizza (below the main recipe). It’s insanely good, as the heat of the grill concentrates tomato slices to a sauce-like consistency.
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