As much as I understand Michael’s desire to minimize the amount of heat that we pump into our apartment during the summer, I still can’t help myself from longing for homemade pizza even when it’s hot AF outside. Part of it is a desire to enjoy the bounty of summer on a pizza crust, and part of it is a desire to take pretty photos of pizzas that we make in natural light. While I may not be able to do the former until September at the earliest, I have decided that my remedy to deal with the natural light issue is to simply start making pizzas for Sunday brunches more often, especially during the late fall and winter when the darkness comes so soon and comfort food is definitely necessary.
This pizza is definitely on my list of brunch pies to make.
Now don’t get it twisted–I may be writing this during a particularly nasty heatwave (temperatures are being predicted to go over 100 degrees this weekend), but I’m not wishing summer away. No, this is just a strategy to help me deal with the existential dread that always starts to take over at the end of October, right around the time Daylight Savings ends and it’s completely dark by 5PM.
I’ll admit that this isn’t the most authentic Lombardy-style pizza, because instead of Bitto cheese (a cheese native to the Lombardy region), I used Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. In the future, though, I’m going to experiment with another hard cheese like Piave or similar that might be a closer match in flavor, but the Parm did work in a pinch. I was happy, however, that the egg came out as perfectly as it did–there are few things as pleasurable as sopping up runny egg yolks with really good homemade pizza.
In fact, I think I’d like to try this with two eggs–one for each of us–because while one runny yolk is good, two are absolutely better.
Lombardy-style pizza with fennel sausage and egg
Slightly adapted from Mastering Pizza by Marc Vetri
Makes one 10-12 inch pizza
- 1 ball Neapolitan style dough at 70% hydration, recipe and preparation here
- ⅓ cup pizza sauce, recipe here
- 2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
- 2 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, torn and drained well
- 2 ounces sweet fennel sausage, casing removed and crumbled
- 1 egg
- ½ teaspoon chopped fresh herbs, such as parsley, oregano, rosemary, and/or thyme
Heat oven to 500 degrees and place the baking steel/stone on the rack closest to the oven.
Once the dough is prepared and on the pizza peel, ladle the sauce onto the dough and spread into a thin and even layer. Spread the cheese, sausage, and both cheeses on the pie and then carefully place the pizza on the steel/stone and cook for 6-8 minutes. Take the pie out and crack the egg in the middle of the pie and place the pizza back in the oven. Switch to the broiler and cook for an additional 2 minutes until the crust is deeply browned. Remove from oven, let rest for five to ten minutes, and then cut and serve. Garnish with fresh herbs on each slice.