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From Italy To Argentina - Fugazzeta

There is a huge pizza culture in Argentinia. but it was originally Italian immigrants who brought focaccia with them, which morphed into a focaccia-pizza hybrid known as fugazza, a thick pizza topped with cheese and shaved onions. This got dialed up a few notches to become fugazzeta, where two pizza crusts are sandwiched around cheese before being crimped shut and topped with a heap of thinly sliced onions.

When I first tried this recipe from the New York Times, the onions seemed way too much, but they’re not. They soften and char, providing a nice reprieve from the rich melted cheese.

I thought I might make a nice tomato sauce to dip it into, but it’s so flavorful, it’s not necessary.

INGREDIENTS

For The Dough

2¼ cups bread flour

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 teaspoon instant yeast

2 teaspoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling

¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons lukewarm water

For The Filling And Topping

1 tablespoon olive oil

5 ounces provolone, sliced*

2cups /6 ounces shredded low-moisture mozzarella

1 teaspoon dried oregano

½ teaspoon red-pepper flakes

Kosher salt

1 large onion, sliced as thinly as you can, preferably with a mandoline (about 3 cups)

3 cups ice cold water

1¾ cups /2 ounces grated Parmesan

METHOD

Prepare the dough: Combine the bread flour, salt and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment.

Mix on medium speed for 1 minute to combine. Add the olive oil and water, and mix on medium until it comes together into a smooth dough, is no longer sticky, and has reached optimum gluten development, 15 to 17 minutes. (You can test gluten development by stretching a small lump of dough between your fingers; when it’s ready it will stretch into a thin, see-through film without tearing.)

Lightly drizzle the dough ball with more olive oil then tightly wrap the bowl in plastic wrap. Set aside to proof in a warm area in your kitchen until doubled in size, 1½ to 2 hours. When you gently poke the dough with your finger, a small indent should remain.

Prepare the filling and topping: Divide the dough into 2 even pieces. Rub the bottom and sides of a well-seasoned 10-inch cast-iron skillet with the olive oil. Stretch out one portion of dough into an even disk that covers (or closely covers)the bottom of the pan.

Place the provolone in the center, leaving a ½-inch border. * If you don’t have provolone, which I did not, use a cheese with a bit of a bite like gouda or gruyere.

Top with the mozzarella, maintaining that ½-inch border along the edges. Evenly sprinkle with oregano, red-pepper flakes and a pinch of salt.

Stretch the remaining portion of dough into an even disk slightly wider than your pan’s size. Drape the disk of dough on top of the cheese and pinch the edges of the top and bottom rounds of dough together, securing all the cheese inside. Cover with a towel and set aside in a warm area to proof for another 30 minutes.

In the meantime, in a large bowl, whisk together 1 tablespoon of salt and the ice water. Soak the shaved onion in the salt water.

Heat oven to 450 degrees.

Drain the onions, spin them dry in a salad spinner, then pat dry with paper towels. Evenly top the fugazzeta with the grated Parmesan, shaved onion, a drizzle of olive oil and a large pinch of salt. Bake until onions have shriveled and charred in spots and the dough is golden brown underneath, 25 to 30 minutes.

Turn the broiler on high and broil until the onions are deeply charred, 2 to 3 minutes. Let rest for at least 10 minutes, then slice into wedges and serve.

Buon appetito, oh, and buen provecho.



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