Lunchbreak: Trenchermen chef Pat Sheerin makes cold pizza

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2039 W. North

Taste of the Nation Chicago
August 13
7:00 p.m.
Navy Pier

For tickets:

Cold Pizza

8 oz. Burrata
2 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
1 pint Heirloom cherry tomatoes (split)
4 oz. thinly sliced pepperoni
1 sprig oregano (to finish)
1/2 cup mixed basils (to finish)
fennel pollen

Pizza Sauce

4 Tbs    extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic (thinly sliced)
1/2 onion (medium, thinly sliced)
1 sprig    fresh thyme
1/2 tsp dried oregano
28 oz. can San Marzano tomatoes (split, squeeze out juice and reserve juice/seeds and tomatoes separately; chop)
salt to taste

In a non-reactive pot (e.g. stainless steel), bring the reserved tomato juice and seeds to a boil and reduce by half.  Strain through a fine mesh sieve, reserve.
In a wide non-reactive pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat, and toast the garlic until light golden brown in the oil.  Add onions, thyme and oregano until onions are soft. Add a pinch of water to help prevent burning and/or caramelization.
Add the reduced tomato juice and cook down until very thick, watching for scorching.  Add the reserved chopped tomatoes and simmer over medium-low heat for approximately 30 minutes.  After thickening, remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature before refrigerating.


1 cup biga (bread starter)
2 Tbs corn meal
2 Tbs    fresh oregano leaves
Fennel pollen

Combine biga, corn meal, fresh oregano leaves and fennel pollen. Drizzle into a 350F fryer, swirling in circles. After 45 seconds, flip it and fry until golden brown.  Transfer to paper towel, and lightly season with fennel pollen and salt.

Place pepperoni slices in a single layer between Silpats or parchment paper, and place the packet between two baking sheets (place a drip tray underneath, as they have a tendency to release some grease).  Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes. Carefully remove from heat and let cool slightly before moving from tray to paper towels.

To assemble:

Toss 1/2 cup of pizza sauce with fresh tomatoes, a drizzle of olive oil and seasoning.  Divide the burrata into 1.5 oz. portions. Place 2-3 tbsp. of the tomato mix on bottom of plate, and place the burrata on top.  Garnish the burrata with a pinch of fennel pollen, and top the dish with fried Biga and pepperoni. Drizzle with olive oil and finish with fresh herbs.

Or instead of making the Biga, you could use slices of toasted bread with a bit of olive oil on the bread and put the toppings on that to make a bruschetta of sorts.


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