Today's installment of The Pizza Lab presents what is probably the most important work of my career. Nay, my life. It's a story of such unparalleled

Why Does Pepperoni Curl? | The Food Lab

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2022-05-13 00:30:42

Today's installment of The Pizza Lab presents what is probably the most important work of my career. Nay, my life. It's a story of such unparalleled importance that it makes pressing international issues like comparative baking surfaces and cold fermentation seem trivial in comparison. I'm talking about pepperoni curl. What it is, what makes it happen, and how to maximize it.

There are times when I'll head into a bog-standard New York slice joint, see those pre-cooked squares with their flat disks of pepperoni, watch some poor sap order them, and think to myself: Ah, you've fallen victim to one of the two classic blunders, the most famous of which is "never question your pizza toppings in Asia," but only slightly less well known is this: "Never order a Sicilian when you spy flat-laying pepperoni on the line."

To me, flat pepperoni just doesn't fit the bill. It sits there, wan and pliable, its grease spreading over the top of semi-coagulated cheese like an oil spill, dripping off the edges of a slice, making the whole endeavor so treacherous that some folks even resort to blotting with paper napkins.

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