Dear Friends this week I am in Montreal in Canada and I love this city.
I am visiting Pia and Pippo, they are friends of mine but, like me, they are Sicilian.
We decided to make “LO SFINCIONE” the SICILIAN PIZZA.
In ancient times sfincione was baked at home with “poor” ingredients, made of what you had at home, flour, onion, anchovy, caciocavallo, bread crumbs, and oregano … and still today these ingredients are kept, in fact the sfincione has been included in the list of traditional Italian food products (P.A.T.) of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Forestry Policies.
A classic recipe of this pizza , and home to many other Sicilian fast foods, is found in its capital, Palermo. The best sfincione you probably will ever have is sold on the streets of Palermo, with men and women alike pushing a cart, the “sfincionaro” (the person who sells the sfincione) is usually shouting (“abbanniare”) to attract the attention of the people saying the usual refrain: “Chi beddu chi ciavuru fa` !! ! oura oura u ‘sfurnavu, uora! (What a nice smell! I’ve baked it, now/Freshly baked!).
- 800 g flour 00 6 3/8 cups
- 200 g semola rimacinata flour 2 cups
- 30 g sugar ¼ cup
- 20 g salt 1 tbsp
- 30 g yeast 3 tbsp
- 50 g organic extra virgin olive oil 4 tbsp
- 500 ml warm water (150ml+350ml) ⅔ cup + 1 ½ cup
- 100 g caciocavallo cheese cut into cubes 3.5 oz
- 7 anchovy fillets cut into small pieces
- 800 g diced peeled tomatoes 4 cups
- 100 g diced caciocavallo cheese (50g + 50g) 1.75 oz + 1.75 oz
- 3 anchovy fillets cut into small pieces
- 3 red onions
- organic extra virgin olive oil
- 100 g grated Sicilian pecorino 3.5 oz
- 70 g bread crumbs ½ cup
- organic extra virgin olive oil
- In a large bowl pour the flour and sugar, add the yeast dissolved in 2/3 cup (150 ml) of warm water and work it with your hands,
- gradually add the remaining hot water and continue to work beating the dough against the walls of the bowl, add the remaining salt and warm water, (be careful, depending on the type of flour, even less water may suffice, then check the consistency of the batter).
- Beat the dough for another 10 minutes more, cover the batter with a cloth and let it sit for about 2 hours.
- As soon as the dough has risen, spread it with oiled hands on a baking sheet covered with oiled parchment paper.
- Insert pieces of anchovy and 3.5 oz (100g) of fresh caciocavallo cheese into the dough and leave it to rise for at least half an hour. Preheat oven 392°F (200°C).
- Cut the onions into thin slices, fry them lightly in a pan with olive oil and anchovies.
- Add half a glass of water and cook for at least 10 minutes.
- When cooked, add the diced peeled tomato, add salt, add 1.75 oz (50g) of chopped caciocavallo cheese and cook over low heat until all the water evaporated, for at least 15/20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Turn off the heat and let it rest.
- Meanwhile, toast the breadcrumbs in a pan for a couple of minutes, stirring constantly to prevent them from burning.
- Remove from the heat and leave to cool, when cooled add the Sicilian pecorino to the breadcrumbs.
- After the dough has risen completely, season the surface evenly with the tomato sauce with onions.
- Put the remaining bits of caciocavallo cheese, spread onto the dough.
- Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and pecorino and finish with the oregano and a drizzle of oil over the entire surface.
- Bake in a preheated oven at 392°F (200°C) for approx. 30 minutes and enjoy your sfincione.