Pizza al Taglio! [street food monday]

Pizza al Taglio, the classic Roman Street Food | The Sugar Hit

 

Is there anyone out there in the world who wouldn’t rather be in Rome right now? I didn’t think so.

 

Not when Italian sunshine and sun-drenched piazzas and Vespas and Pizza al Taglio exist.

 

Pizza al Taglio, the classic Roman Street Food | The Sugar Hit

 

Let’s talk pizza for a minute (I could talk pizza for an eternity, but I’ll try to keep it short). The pizza that I think of as original, real deal, Pizza with a capital P, comes from Naples.

 

The crust is thin, chewy and blistered from being baked in a wood-fired oven. The toppings are sparse, and the classico is the Margherita made with nothing but tomato sauce, basil and mozzarella – perfect in its simplicity.

 

Pizza al Taglio, the classic Roman Street Food | The Sugar Hit

 

This is not that pizza. That kind of pizza in Italy is eaten in a restaurant, sitting down, and with a knife and fork. And as much as I love that kind of pizza, this is not restaurant-food Monday. This is Street Food Monday.

 

Which brings me to Pizza al Taglio. THIS is Italian Street Food Pizza.

 

Pizza al Taglio, the classic Roman Street Food | The Sugar Hit

 

This is the kind of pizza that you buy from a little hole-in-the-wall place where they hand it over the counter to you, wrapped in paper and ready to eat. This is by-the-slice pizza, Italian style.

 

When you’re lucky enough to locate a spot for Pizza al Taglio in the absolute maze of Rome’s streets, I highly suggest you stop in for a slice.

 

Pizza al Taglio, the classic Roman Street Food | The Sugar Hit

 

You will see that the pizza comes in long rectangular slabs with different toppings, all waiting behind a glass counter. The crust is thick – maybe just over half an inch. You make your choice, and the friendly Italian will gesture as to how much they should chop you off (My suggestion? Get a little taste of a few).

 

They will then take to your chosen pizza with a pair of scissors and deftly sheer you off a slice. They pass the magical pie over the counter on a piece of paper and away you go to find a sunny spot to enjoy your pie.

 

Pizza al Taglio, the classic Roman Street Food | The Sugar Hit

 

Aaaaaaand if you’re not in Rome, you thank your lucky stars that Pizza al Taglio is so beautifully suited to being recreated at home. No wood-fired oven required (although if you’ve got one, be my guest), the crust is baked in a tray, and the ingredients are easily sourced from the local deli.

 

I like to top mine with oil-preserved artichokes, which I think of as a quintessentially Roman ingredient, along with Mozzarella, fresh prosciutto and rocket. And I like to make my own sauce; it takes about 5 minutes and it will take your pizza to the next level. This is one of my very favourite things to eat of all time, and always takes me straight to Rome. What’s your favourite food or travel memory?

 

xx Sarah.

 

Pizza al Taglio, the classic Roman Street Food | The Sugar Hit

 

Pizza al Taglio! [street food monday]
 
The classic Roman street food pizza.
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
For the dough:
  • 2 + ½ cups (375g) all purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp dry active yeast
  • 1½ cups (375ml) warm water
For the sauce:
  • 14oz (400g) can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely sliced
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • salt and pepper
For the topping:
  • mozzarella
  • oil-preserved artichokes
  • prosciutto
  • rocket (arugula)
Instructions
  1. To make the dough, combine all the ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Work on a low speed until the dough comes together, and then increase the speed to medium, and knead for about 2 minutes. This is a wet dough, so don't worry if it doesn't form a ball. Cover the bowl with plastic in leave to rise in a warm spot for 30 minutes.
  2. While the dough is rising, make the sauce. Drain the can of tomatoes and discard the liquid. Heat the oil in a small saucepan and add the finely sliced garlic. Cook the garlic for about 30 seconds, and then add the drained tomatoes, oregano and a pinch of salt and pepper to the pan. Cook on a low heat for about 5 minutes, or until the sauce is basically dry and looks very rich. Set aside to cool.
  3. When the dough has nearly finished rising, turn the oven on to preheat to 425F/220C and line a sheet pan with baking paper. Scrape the dough out onto the baking paper and, using wet hands, push and spread the dough out to cover the base of the tray.
  4. Top the dough with the cooled pizza sauce, and then add a light covering of mozzarella and pieces of artichoke. Bake the pizza for 15 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown, and the topping is bubbling and melted.
  5. Scatter over the prosciutto and a sprinkling of rocket, and then serve.

 

30 Comments

  1. this looks like perfection!!! I love me some good pizza. also, i think i pretty much always want to be in italy, or europe for that matter. things just seem so much cooler there!

    • I couldn’t agree more! Meet you in Rome? (PS your cookie dough cupcakes look amazing!)

  2. This is is some of the best pizza i have seen in forever. Think crust, simple and cheese!! And yes, I would so rather be in rome right now!

    • Thank you lovely lady! Your blackened salmon looked ridiculicious!

  3. Knife and fork? Ain’t nobody got time for that! Hand me a slice of pizza and a cute Italian on a Vespa and I”m good to go. :)

  4. The most delicious thing I’ve ever eaten was a slice of tomato and pepper pizza in Rome out of a little hole in the wall shop! It was raining, we were starving and the owner promised it would be the best pizza we’d ever eaten. I still haven’t been able to find or make a pizza better! This version looks absolutely perfect, It’s really making me miss Rome though!

  5. I agree-who wouldn’t rather be in Rome right now? Love this pizza. Love this street food Monday scene. Love you.

  6. WHAT. how have i not had street food pizza. get this in my mouth right now.

  7. This looks like a perfect recreation Sarah! The artichokes and prosciutto are just a match made in heaven!
    One of my favourite street foods is Japanese takoyaki (balls of pancake dough with octopus)- SO GOOD!

    ps. have you tried smoked prosciutto? I recently discovered it and yum yum yum is all i can say!

    • Thanks Millie – and no I haven’t tried smoked prosciutto! It sounds GORGEOUS though.

  8. So when do we leave for Rome?! You would make smashing traveling partner!
    This pizza looks like the perfect cure to my traveling blues!

  9. Yes to pizza! Pizza all the time! I have only been to Rome once, but I would go back in a minute. Although I might not choose July as the ideal month! February is much more my speed. :)

  10. Did you really come up with this whole recipe yourself, the dough and everything? I can’t imagine making a pizza dough without consulting a recipe… I’m maybe just naive though haha :) it looks so good.

    • Haha, I know what you mean Maria! But I have been making this dough for ages and tweaking it and perfecting it. I can now say confidently that this is my recipe, and I think it’s a pretty good one!

    • Thanks Alice – tapas and sangria sounds amazing, and I LOVE Burek! I’m definitely adding that one to my list!

  11. My favorite kind of pizza is the kind they make in Napoli, big fluffy crust and all. Nowadays there are many pizzerie that do that all round the country. Pizza al taglio is always a great alternative at lunch or when you’re on the go, and thankfully there are many pizzerie al taglio in every city in Italy. My favorite is salsiccia e patate, sausage and potatoes, or just a regular spianata, no totatoes or mozzarella but just a drizzle of olive oil and rosemary on top. The best!

  12. Yes, I would love to be in Rome or really anywhere in Italy right now. Italian street food is the best and your Pizza al Taglio looks great!

    • Thanks Carrie! Let’s get over to Positano, yeah?

  13. Your blog is so adorable and witty – it’s my favorite new find! The pizza looks so delicious and simple.

  14. Hi Sarah…made this last night…have to admit, I had my doubts working with the wet dough! Turned out fantastic!….thanks so much for this recipe…best pizza base EVER!

    • That’s fantastic! Thanks so much for trying it and dropping me a line, Sean! I’m jealous of you that you ate pizza last night.

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About Sarah

Sarah Coates| The Sugar Hit

I'm Sarah, and this is my blog THE SUGAR HIT! If you like Baking, Street Food, Desserts, and Eating (especially if everything's been kicked up a notch) then you've come to the right place! Welcome!

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