“Much less Is Completely Extra”—A Chef Shares Suggestions for Making Restaurant-High quality Pizza at Residence

If you already know the Camille Kinds group, you already know: we’re pizza-obsessed. From candy toppings (we love our peaches) to savory bites (cross the prosciutto pizza, please), there’s one thing for everybody in relation to this widely-loved dish. And though I’ve made many pizzas myself, I’ve by no means been in a position to replicate the pies from my favourite neighborhood joint. However all that’s modified, as a result of I’ve insider tips about the right way to craft the proper pizza from Chef Janice Tiefenbach herself.

Montreal is one in every of my favourite cities, and each time I go to, I schedule out time in my itinerary for a meal at Janice’s restaurant, Elena. Along with her new cookbook, Salad Pizza Wine, Janice and the Elena group share their treasured assortment of the restaurant’s well-loved dishes. Alongside pizza and pasta, the ebook highlights ingenious salads, a mortadella sandwich that defines chef’s kiss, and desserts you’ll need to save room for.

Janice Tiefenbach Shares the Secret to Excellent Pizza

However past the recipes, Salad Pizza Wine gives an in depth however comprehensible method to elevating your pizza at dwelling. From selecting the perfect components to tips about stretching your dough for a cracker-like crust, think about this your one-stop store for perfecting your pizza. And at this time, you’re getting the behind-the-scenes scoop from Janice Tiefenbach herself. Maintain studying to get all the small print on making her stellar Neopolitan Margherita pizza at dwelling.

“My choice is for a pure method to cooking. Instinctive, with respect for traditions however a want for freshness and a contemporary sensibility.”

How would you describe your cooking and meals philosophy? How has it influenced the menu at your restaurant, Elena?

My choice is for a pure method to cooking. Instinctive, with respect for traditions however a want for freshness and a contemporary sensibility. I attempt to comply with a rule of simplicity and performance. Each ingredient in a dish ought to be there for a purpose, and to serve the aim of permitting the featured ingredient to shine as a lot as potential. At Elena, we attempt to discover a stability between respecting Italian culinary custom however utilizing the perfect components we discover nearer to dwelling.

What makes the Elena Margherita pizza particular?

Our Margherita makes use of the perfect components we might discover as domestically as potential. We use domestically milled flour (not Italian imported), California natural tomatoes (Bianco di Napoli!), and Quebec Buffalo Mozzarella from an unbelievable native producer (Macioccia). The basil is from a neighborhood vegetable grower or our personal backyard and the olive oil is from our associates at Pacina.

One other factor that makes our pizza distinctive is the truth that it’s 100% naturally leavened. Moreover the integrity of all the opposite components, the truth that it’s a pure fermentation makes the dough lots tastier and far simpler to digest. 

What makes this recipe your go-to?

Margherita pizza is a straight-up traditional. For many individuals, I believe it’s the platonic best of what a pizza ought to be. It satisfies in a really elementary means. The mixture of the tangy/candy sauce, the creamy and salty cheese, and the vary of textures within the dough from tender and moist to crispy and charred makes it fully irresistible. It’s a type of meals that once I eat it my mind sort of shuts down for a second and I don’t must assume in any respect. I simply get pleasure from each chew.

What kitchen software do you advocate for making this pizza?

I extremely advocate investing in a conveyable pizza oven. My choice is the ooni for its unbelievable design and relative affordability. For those who love Neapolitan-style pizza, you’ll by no means remorse shopping for one in every of these. It’s very simple to make use of and produces an impressive pizza. 

However should you aren’t able to spend money on an ooni and nonetheless need to strive your hand at selfmade Neapolitan pizza, I like to recommend investing in a pizza stone. It’s arduous to copy what we do on the restaurant in our wooden oven in a standard oven, so I typically counsel beginning with al taglio pizza. It lends itself rather more to a house oven set-up. 

A pizza peel can also be fairly important and isn’t costly in any respect. One of many steps that usually journeys up newbie pizza makers is transferring the uncooked pizza to the oven. Studying the right way to use a pizza peel will change the sport.

Margherita pizza requires only a handful of components. What makes this recipe particular? 

In the case of pizza, much less is totally extra. Somewhat restraint pays off and permits a couple of components to work together in a extra direct means with surprisingly efficient outcomes. Sauce, cheese, oil, and basil are good on their very own. However collectively, they resonate and turn out to be rather more than the sum of their components. Investing a bit further in good-quality tomatoes and cheese is price it. 

What ideas and methods are you able to share for making restaurant-quality pizza?

I counsel rookies double the dough recipe the primary couple instances you make pizza. That means, you don’t need to stress a lot should you mess up. The actual secret to creating good pizza is follow.  Skilled pizza makers have spent actually 1000’s of hours studying the right way to good tiny actions when dealing with the dough. However mainly it’s only a pile of dough with some sauce on prime, so don’t be so intimidated! 

A few issues to bear in mind:

  • Maintain the dough lined till you’re prepared to make use of it. Publicity to the air creates a pores and skin on the floor of the dough which isn’t fascinating.
  • Mud your surfaces, dough, and palms with a bit flour. This makes it so the dough isn’t too sticky and is much less more likely to persist with the peel or the counter. 
  • Let the dough mood a bit earlier than you attempt to work with it. Chilly dough is extra more likely to tear. The extra relaxed and heat the dough is the looser it turns into. After that, you don’t actually need to do a lot to stretch it out. 

What recommendation would you give to somebody who is perhaps intimidated by making pizza at dwelling?

  1. Double the batch so you’ve some to fiddle with. That takes loads of the stress away.
  2. Begin with the al taglio dough. It’s a a lot wetter dough that yields means higher ends in a house oven. Everybody like to begin with a win!
  3. Don’t overload your pizza with components. Too many toppings will crush the dough, resulting in issues like holes within the dough or undercooked dough.

What do you hope individuals study after they make your recipes?

I actually love cooking for individuals and making individuals pleased by meals. My hope is that folks get to share in a little bit of what we do at Elena and it brings them the identical pleasure and happiness at dwelling. I hope individuals use this ebook as a information and it helps to provide them instruments to prepare dinner the meals that makes them pleased. 

Observe Elena, Janice, and Espresso Pizza Wine on Instagram and preserve studying to get Janice Tiefenbach‘s recipe for this Margherita pizza.


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Margherita Pizza is the benchmark for good pizzas and this easy recipe units you up for scrumptious selfmade success.

  • 1 ball of Neapolitan Pizza Dough
  • 1/4 cup canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1 ball (75g or about 1/2 cup) buffalo mozzarella
  • 1 tablespoon further virgin olive oil + extra to complete
  • 68 leaves of contemporary basil

  1. Stretch the dough and switch onto a pizza peel. 
  2. To bake in an oven, place a rack within the decrease third of the oven and take away the rack above it. Slide a pizza stone on the rack and switch up your oven to 500 F. Let the stone preheat for at the least 1 hour earlier than baking your pizza. (For those who don’t have a pizza stone, you’ll be able to bake the pizza immediately on an inverted baking sheet with out preheating it.)
  3. Dollop the crushed tomatoes within the middle of the pizza and, with the again of a spoon, gently unfold the sauce in a round outward movement, leaving 1 1/2 inches of uncovered dough across the edges for the crust. Watch out to not apply an excessive amount of stress to keep away from damaging the dough.
  4. Break up the mozzarella together with your palms and unfold it evenly over the sauce. Drizzle the pizza with a tablespoon of olive oil.
  5. Take the peel and insert it into the oven at a slight angle till you’ll be able to attain the again of the pizza stone. Give the peel a bit shake to permit the pizza to begin sliding off it—it ought to appear to be you’re draping the pizza from the again of the stone to the entrance.
  6. Bake the pizza for 8-10 minutes, till the middle has set and the crust has shaped good golden and blistered bubbles. As soon as you’re happy with the bake of your pizza, use the peel to take away it from the oven and switch it onto a cooling rack. Let it relaxation for 1 minute.
  7. Drizzle the pizza with extra olive oil, switch to a chopping board or pizza pan, reduce and prime with a couple of contemporary basil leaves.
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook dinner Time: 10
  • Class: Pizza

Key phrases: Margherita, Pizza

Excerpted from Salad Pizza Wine by Janice Tiefenbach, Stephanie Mercier Voyer, Ryan Grey and Marley Sniatowsky. Copyright 2023 Janice Tiefenbach, Stephanie Mercier Voyer, Ryan Grey and Marley Sniatowsky. Images by Dominque Lafond. Printed by Urge for food by Random Home, a division of Penguin Random Home Canada Restricted. Reproduced by association with the Writer. All rights reserved.