Brooklyn style dough differs from traditional New York pizza in the sense that Brooklyn style pizza is much crispier and has the ingredients on the edge of the dough. New York-style pizza is typically cooked in a charcoal oven, giving the dough a unique crunchy flavor and texture. Pizza is usually larger than Brooklyn-style pizza, with more slices per pie. Ingredients include pepperoni, sausage, and mushrooms.
Brooklyn pizza tends to have the same size ranges as New York pizza (around 18 to 45 inches). The two pizzas also have similar ingredients, are eaten the same way and are mixed by hand to help produce a perfect dough. One of the most revered forms of American pizza originates in New Haven, CT. The style has a lot in common with the Neapolitan-American style.
The cakes are cooked in charcoal ovens, which gives them the same charring and are sold whole rather than by slices. They differ in that they tend to have a more irregular shape, more oblong than round and are drier, with much less cheese. The closest restaurant that serves this type of pizza is Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana in Yonkers, NY. The classic New York slice impressed the people of Brooklyn.
While the dough for a New York-style pizza was hand-mixed, soft and a little spongy, Brooklyn pizza was different. Manhattan is the birthplace of the American version of Neapolitan pizza. Specifically, it was created by Gennaro Lombardi in 1905, who sold whole cakes for a penny and was the first known pizza chef to offer pizza by the serving, which made it an affordable food option for the city's working class. Over time, charcoal kilns became less and less common in Manhattan thanks to regulations and other logistical obstacles.
This led to the creation of the beloved New York-style pizza, which normally measures 18 inches and replaces fresh mozzarella with the grated variety with low moisture content. The New York cake is much cheesier than the Neapolitan version, which explains why it has become the favorite in the United States. There are countless places to find great oversized New York-style pizzas in Manhattan, but many consider Joe's Pizza of Greenwich Village to be the best. There is also Carmine pizza with 26% salt on the Upper West Side, the venerable Scarr's Pizza on the Lower East Side and a million more quality options in every neighborhood of Manhattan.
Is there a single variation of pizza that can be called “Brooklyn style”? Despite what some fast-food pizza chains tell you, the answer is no. Neo-Neapolitan pizza pays homage to the roots of pizza, but is not limited by tradition. That's why you'll find amazingly delicious combinations, such as hot honey and soppressata, garlic and bacon, and bresaola and kale at Brooklyn pizzerias that serve Neo-Neapolitan pies. The Williamsburg Scooter is a favorite here at The Sauce, but Paulie Gee's in Greenpoint and Roberta's in Bushwick have also earned their stripes in an increasingly competitive landscape for this style of pizza.
Of course, no summary of Brooklyn pizza would be complete without mentioning the magnificent Sicilian squares found in L%26B Spumoni Gardens. Located in Bensonhurst, a paradise for Italian food in South Brooklyn, L%26B has been serving thick, buttery slices since the late 1930s. The L%26B became fashionable to be square in Brooklyn, and its stamps can be found at Nonno's Pizza in Bay Ridge and in many other salons in BK. Those looking for Neo-Neapolitan cakes will want to focus on Brooklyn, and those who want an excellent 18-inch New York cake may prefer to focus on Manhattan, but in every corner of the city there is a stellar representation of all styles.
From big pizzas to small calzones, you'll enjoy the real Brooklyn experience at Lucali Brooklyn and some of the tastiest pizzas in the area. So what is a Brooklyn pizza made of? Well, many consider this pizza to be one of the most modern types, but it is closely related to the original type of pizza, Italy. If you're in the mood for a more traditional style of pizza, there are certain ingredients that Brooklyn-style pizza lovers wouldn't think of. Basic flour, tomato, pizza sauce, and cheese made up the pizza good enough for people to devour.
It is also one of the only remaining pizzerias that uses charcoal stoves to prepare their pizzas. The company introduced the pizza promising a thinner dough than all other pizzas, with cornmeal cooked in the dough to make it even crispier (a trademark of the Brooklyn-style pie). Pizza on the subway is well represented throughout the city, especially at Sullivan Street Bakery, which serves versions of pizza bianca (a hand-drawn bread) and pizza Pomodoro, which would be the envy of almost any Roman baker. If you want a more classic style of pizza, there are certain ingredients that most genuine Brooklyn pizza fans don't consider, such as pineapple, sausage and tropical fruits, which are very popular in the city.
The recipe was probably passed down from generation to generation in the Lombardi family and was adapted with local ingredients and cooking methods, resulting in a form of pizza inspired by, but different from, the original Naples pizza. New York-style pizza is sold as whole pies or by the slice (a triangular wedge cut from an entire pizza). As for toppings, mozzarella and provolone cheese and a sweet and spicy tomato sauce are the best ingredients for topping a Brooklyn-style pizza. A Neapolitan Pizza, which has since moved to San Francisco, really increased the stakes in terms of attention to detail, and some would say militancy, when it came to recreating the original Naples pizza with an oven and imported ingredients.
The history of pizza in the United States begins in New York City in 1905 with Gennaro Lombardi, who began selling pizza in his supermarket on Spring Street for the princely sum of a penny per cake. It is known that several celebrities frequent this pizza place and it is arguably the best known and most loved pizza place in the entire Brooklyn neighborhood. But in the post-war years, pizza also ceased to have its ethnic denomination, as returning soldiers sought to satisfy the taste they had acquired for Italian pizza while liberating Europe. If you prefer a little less dough than what a normal handmade pizza offers, but you still want a little more than what thinner doughs provide, Brooklyn pizzas are an excellent option.