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New Haven Pizza | Source: YouTube/vitoiacopelli
New Haven Pizza | Source: YouTube/vitoiacopelli

New Haven Pizza Recipe — a Guide to Crafting Connecticut’s Iconic Thin-Crust Pies

Naomi Wanjala
Feb 03, 2024
05:30 A.M.
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Embark on a century-old culinary journey with the legendary New Haven Pizza recipe deeply rooted in the vibrant Italian-American community of Connecticut. This unique pizza, cherished by locals for generations, is not just a dish – it's a slice of history that beckons you to unravel its secrets.

If you're a pizza lover and haven't tried New Haven Pizza, you're missing out on a culinary masterpiece. Originating in the 1920s when Italian immigrant Frank Pepe opened his pizzeria on Wooster Street, this pizza has stood the test of time, captivating hearts with its thin, crispy crust and slightly charred edges.

Crafted with high-protein bread flour and cooked at extremely high temperatures, the New Haven Pizza boasts a texture and flavor like no other. Now, let's plunge into the art of making this extraordinary pizza. Whether entertaining guests or treating your family on a weekend, the New Haven Pizza recipe promises a culinary experience that transcends time.

Homemade New Haven pizza with oregano and bacon | Source: Shutterstock

Homemade New Haven pizza with oregano and bacon | Source: Shutterstock

New Haven Pizza Recipe

Ingredients for Pizza Dough:

  • 3 grams of fresh yeast
  • 510 grams of warm water
  • 17 grams of kosher salt
  • 750 grams of bread flour
  • Olive oil (for coating the bowl)

Ingredients for Tomato Sauce:

  • 1 can (28 ounces) San Marzano tomatoes (whole, peeled)
  • 1.5 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped

Ingredients for Classic Sauce:

  • Tomato sauce (from above)
  • Dried oregano
  • Olive oil
  • Pecorino Romano cheese (optional)

Equipment & Tools Required:

  • Stand mixer
  • Plastic wrap
  • Pizza peel & stone
  • Large mixing bowls
  • Food processor

Preparation Time: 6-8 hours (fermentation)

Cooking Time: 3-5 minutes (per pizza)

A person adding flour to dough while using a mixer. | Source: Pexels

A person adding flour to dough while using a mixer. | Source: Pexels

Instructions:

1. Begin by activating the yeast: Add 3 grams of fresh yeast to 510 grams of warm water in the bowl of a stand mixer. Let it sit and activate for about 5 minutes.

2. In a separate bowl, create the dry mixture: Combine 17 grams of kosher salt with 750 grams of bread flour. Once the yeast mixture bubbles, add the flour and salt. Attach the dough hook to the mixer and mix for 15 seconds until a shaggy dough forms. Allow the dough to rest for 20 minutes.

3. Ensure to mix on medium-high speed to achieve smoothness and elasticity, typically taking about 6-8 minutes. Transfer the dough to an olive oil-coated bowl, cover it with plastic wrap, and let it rise at room temperature for 5-7 hours, allowing it to quadruple in size.

Close-up photo of pizza sauce in a glass jar. | Source: Pexels

Close-up photo of pizza sauce in a glass jar. | Source: Pexels

4. For the perfect New Haven-style pizza sauce, start with a 28-ounce can of San Marzano tomatoes. Combine the tomatoes with 1 tbsp of fresh oregano and 1.5 tsp of kosher salt in a food processor. Pulse until achieving a chunky, not pureed, texture.

5. Elevate Your New Haven Pizza with these Toppings:

  • Margherita: Tomato sauce, dried oregano, olive oil, and Pecorino Romano cheese(optional)
  • Cheese Lovers: Mozzarella cheese, dried oregano, olive oil, and Pecorino Romano.
  • Clam and Garlic: Chopped garlic, Freshly shucked clams, dried oregano, olive oil, and Pecorino Romano cheese.
A person using his fingers to flatten a pizza dough | Source: Pexels

A person using his fingers to flatten a pizza dough | Source: Pexels

6. Shaping New Haven pizza by hand the traditional way can be challenging, but it's possible. Use fingertips to flatten the dough, and for a thinner crust, consider using a rolling pin or dough docking.

7. Preheat your oven to 500°F (260°C) with a pizza stone or steel inside for at least an hour. Slide the pizza onto the preheated stone using a pizza peel or inverted baking sheet. Bake for 7-8 minutes, turning occasionally, until the crust and cheese achieve the desired char level and crispiness.

8. Finish with a quick broil for an additional 1-2 minutes. Your New Haven-style pizza dough is now ready to serve. Bon appetite!

The secret to a great New Haven-style pizza is its exceptional crust. If you can't make it to the renowned pizzerias in the New Haven area, this recipe empowers you to craft your own delectable New Haven-style pizza at home. Perfect for sharing with family and friends, this homemade pizza promises an authentic taste of the East Coast classic.

For those eager to explore more culinary delights, delve into Gordon Ramsay's Lasagna recipe for another cooking adventure.

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