Since my grandmother died, my family has yet to find a recipe similar to her pizza. It was not like ordinary pizza. Not a lot of cheese, not much sauce, some anchovy in the sauce- very Sicilian. This recipe is something that reminds me of her and definitely something I will be making this Christmas Day– Sfincione di San Giovanni (Sicilian Christmas Pizza).
Sfincione di San Giovanni (Sicilian Christmas Pizza)
Recipe Type: Italian (Sicilian)
- Dough Ingredients:
- 1 pound of High Gluten Flour
- 1 1/2 cups of tap water
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- 2 tablespoons of condensed milk
- 1 packet of dry active yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
- 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
- Ingredients for Sfincione Sauce:
- 3 medium yellow onion, coarsley chopped
- 1 teaspoon of capers
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup red table wine
- 3 cups water
- salt & pepper
- Ingredients for Bread Crumb Topping:
- 2 cups coarse plain bread crumbs
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon of paprika
- 1 tablespoon of chopped flat leaf parsley
- 1/4 teaspoon of cracked pepper
- 1 teaspoon of minced fresh garlic
- 2 tablespoons of grated parmigiano reggiano
- 1 tablespoon of fresh oregano
- 4 tablespoons (2 ounces) of extra virgin olive oil
- Ingredients for Classic Palermitana Sfincione di San Giovanni:
- 20 oil cured Sicilian olives (pitted)
- 10 anchovy fillets (canned in oil or freshly gutted and marinated for 24 hours in salt and extra virgin olive oil)
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3/4 pound Caccio Cavallo cheese
- Sfincione Sauce
- Bread Crumb Topping
- Dough Instructions:
- Combine tap water and yeast giving a little stir, then setting aside for five minutes.
- Stir once again to make sure the mixture is not clumpy.
- Add flour and mix for five minutes on speed one. (kitchen aid mixer or the like of)
- Create a well in the dough and add the salt. Mix for two minutes on speed one.
- Create a well in the dough and add the condensed milk. Mix for two minutes on speed one.
- Create a well in the dough and add the extra virgin olive oil. Mix for two minutes on speed one or until it resembles a complete dough ball.
- Set the dough in a lightly oiled plastic container with a top. Refrigerate this dough ball for 48 hours.
- After this “cold rise fermentation period” allow dough ball to come to room temperature before slacking out the dough.
- Sauce Instructions:
- Heat a large sauce pan on stove top.
- Add two tablespoons olive oil. Allow to shimmer.
- Add onions, and capers. Sautee on high heat for ten minutes.
- Add red wine and cook on medium high heat until almost all liquid is gone.
- Add tomato paste. Continually stirring on medium high heat for additional two to three minutes.
- Add 3 cups of water and reduce down until mixture is very thick.
- Transfer to food processor and pulse until it is sauce like.
- Bread Topping Instructions:
- In a 350 degree oven, toast bread crumbs for eight to ten minutes.
- In a large bowl combine all of the ingredients and mix well.
- Classic Palermitana Sfincione di San Giovanni Instructions:
- Note: you will need a “teglia” pan (usually 12 by 18 inches) or two 10″ rounds
- Take dough out of the fridge and let stand at room temperature for two hours or until it has reached ambient temperature.
- Generously grease the “teglia” pan with the extra virgin olive oil.
- Work the dough on the counter surface using only extra virgin olive oil. Do NOT use flour. Slack out the dough until it is a little bit bigger then the pan you are using. Then place inside the pan, gently pulling the dough into the corners.
- Add a little bit more extra virgin olive oil to the top and gently coat the entire top of the dough using your fingers.
- Cover “teglia” pan with plastic wrap, and let sit in the room temp oven for 2 hours.
- Take off the plastic wrap
- Break the anchovies in half or thirds and gently press them into the dough. Dispersing all of them evenly.
- In a 450 degree oven, cook the Sfincione until it has just started to turn color and take out.
- Distribute the Cacio Cavallo cheese evenly.
- Using a spoon, evenly disperse the desired amount of Sfincione Sauce.
- Break the oil cured sicilian olives in half and evenly distribute them on top of the Sfincione Sauce.
- Evenly distribute the Bread Crumb Topping on top of the Sfincione Sauce.
- Return to the oven and allow to cook until the crust is a deep golden brown.