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The pizza: a dish fit for kings… and for queens!

All Renato Bosco’s secrets for a true Margherita

Every day, millions of people around the world eat the pizza, the dish symbolising Italy and the Mediterranean diet.
However, not many have had the chance to taste the true pizza, made according to the noble rules of the Neapolitan ovens. In 1889 Her Majesty Queen Margherita, wife of King Umberto I, wrote a letter to Raffaele Esposito, a Neapolitan pizza cook, to thank him for producing such a tasty dish.
What makes such a simple food so special that it has become not only regal but also worthy of candidacy for Unesco’s World Heritage List?
Let’s find out with the help of Renato Bosco’s recipe. He is certainly one of the greatest experts on leavened doughs in Italy, a true celebrity in the use of mother yeast for the pizza, bread and pastries, and has already been a guest at the Forte Village at Santa Margherita di Pula on the occasion of the Celebrity Chef Night.

First of all, to make 8 round pizzas we need:
• 1 kilo of stone-ground flour
• 100 grams of live mother dough
• 700 -750 milligrams of water at 25°C
• 1 kilo of PDO buffalo mozzarella
• 800 grams of Italian tomato passata
• 20 grams di salt
• 20 milligrams of extra-virgin olive oil.

To make the dough we must equip ourselves with a bowl large enough to hold the flour, mother dough and water.
We take the mature mother dough, mix it with the flour, add the water and begin to knead. Then we add the oil and salt and go on kneading to obtain a homogeneous mixture. When the dough ball is ready, we leave it to rest in the refrigerator overnight in a bowl covered with cling film.
With the aid of the scales, we shape some balls 200-300 grams each. We must leave the dough to rest for another three hours at room temperature before we can begin to flatten it out with our hands. Once this is done we sprinkle the disc with flour and cover it with the passata.
For the cooking, 6-7 minutes are sufficient in an oven pre-heated to 220-250°C in static mode.
Only at this point do we add the mozzarella, previously cut into thin slices, and leave to cook for a few more minutes.
When we take the pizza out of the oven, we add a drizzle of oil, oregano and a few basil leaves and, there you are, the true Margherita is served!