'Philly-fy' your Super Bowl snacks
Everyone has his own idea of the perfect game-day food. Eagles defensive end Chris Long likes macaroni and cheese; defensive tackle Beau Allen goes for bacon-wrapped hot dogs; wide receiver Alshon Jeffery likes to dig into steak, rice, and vegetables. This year, Philadelphia fans and chefs are infusing Super Bowl food with some extra Philly pride.
Devising a Philadelphia-style pizza to celebrate the Eagles in the Super Bowl was no problem for pie master Joe Beddia once he eliminated the competition. In a mental review of the game-day snacks that best capture the spirit of the city's sports fans, he quickly crossed out cheesesteaks, soft pretzels — "I'm not going to put a soft pretzel on a pizza," he said — and roast pork.
That left hoagies. Hoagie pizza, to be exact.
"This was really my only option," Beddia said of his creation, a cheese pie with red onions in the sauce, baked to crisp perfection in the oven at his Girard Avenue pizzeria, then layered with thin slices of Mortadella, arugula, and pickled chili peppers.
The pizza can be assembled for Super Bowl party guests after the pie comes out of the oven, with slices of meat draped gently over the top, dressed with greens and peppers, then garnished with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of fresh grated cheese. Home chefs can use the dough and sauce recipes from Beddia's cookbook, Pizza Camp, or take shortcuts using premade dough and sauce.
1 one-pound ball of pizza dough, store-bought or homemade
Approximately ¾ cup tomato sauce, store-bought or homemade
1 small red onion, sliced thin
4 ounces shredded whole-milk low-moisture mozzarella cheese
4 ounces whole-milk fresh mozzarella cheese
6 thin slices Mortadella
2 cups arugula
Pickled serrano chilies
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Finely grated aged cheese, for garnish
Place pizza stone on low oven rack and preheat oven to 500 to 550 degrees for an hour before baking.
Place room-temperature dough on floured counter and form a 16-inch disk, pressing down with floured fingers.
Flour a pizza peel, making sure it's coated evenly, then lift dough and transfer it gently to the pizza peel.
Take approximately ¾ cup of sauce and spread it over the dough to the edges.
When dough is evenly coated, add shredded cheese and then whole milk mozzarella, placing it on the pie in small clumps. Coat pizza evenly, being careful not to crowd the center.
Add sliced onion.
Take peel and place pizza on stone at a downward angle, touching the tip of the peel to the back of the stone and then sliding the pizza onto the stone.
Bake pizza for eight to 10 minutes, looking for the cheese to color and the crust to turn dark brown.
When finished, slide the peel under the pie and remove it from oven, then transfer it to a cutting board or aluminum tray.
Arrange Mortadella over pizza. Top with arugula, grated cheese, and as many chilies as desired.
Finish with a drizzle of olive oil.
FRY EAGLES FRY
The Fry Eagles Fry hamburger prepared by Executive Chef Justin Swain at Rex 1516 in Philadelphia.
Photo by Yong Kim | Philly.com
For Justin Swain, chef at the Southern-influenced Rex 1516, burgers are essential. He crafted the Fry Eagles Fry, a mammoth two-patty burger with shredded lettuce and fries piled on a sesame bun, topped with a tangy pimento cheese sauce.
The sauce color brings to mind the Whiz one might order wit a cheesesteak, but it's richer, spicier and it oozes down the side of the burger with each bite.
His tips for setting up a premier burger bar for friends and Super Bowl parties: offer several kinds of patties, including veggie and turkey. Set out raw, sautéed and crispy onions, as well as tomatoes, pickles, sliced jalapeños, pickled tomatoes and lettuce in both shredded and leaf form.
Pimento "Cheez Whiz" Sauce
For the Fry Eagles Fry burger topped with pimento cheese sauce. Makes about 3 quarts.
2 pounds soft white cheddar cheese, shredded
4 ounces cream cheese, cubed
32 ounces milk
4 ounces pickled hot cherry peppers, seeded and finely minced
1 tablespoon minced onion
2 ounces Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon black pepper
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Pinch dry mustard
1 tablespoon hot sauce
Bring milk to a simmer in a heavy-bottomed pot.
Add peppers, onion, Worcestershire, spices, and hot sauce and whisk until fully incorporated.
Add cheeses a little at a time, making sure they melt before adding more.
Keep warm in slow-cooker or fondue pot while serving.
VETERANS STADIUM ROAST PORK SANDWICH
Photo by Sydney Schaefer | Philly.com
Photo by Sydney Schaefer | Philly.com
Chef-owner Josh Lawler has been serving one of his tailgate standbys to his customers at the Farm & Fisherman Tavern in Horsham for years. The Veterans Stadium roast pork sandwich was inspired by the one Lawler made in January 2003, when the Eagles faced Tampa Bay in an NFC championship game that was the last football match played at the city's former stadium.
The flavors are simple, classic, and pure Philly: pork shoulder roasted with rosemary, garlic, lemon and chili flakes and then braised. Slices of the meat are piled on soft white kaiser rolls with braised broccoli rabe, garlic and slices of sharp provolone cheese, then topped with roasted long hots.
"We spent the whole day in the parking lot, eating those sandwiches," Lawler said. Later, once kickoff approached, they wrapped up a few more and smuggled them into the stadium to eat inside.
Was Lawler worried about jinxing the game by making a meal that had accompanied 2003's loss?
"No, because it was such a great day," he said. "I think this is the year to go all-out. With food, with everything."
This recipe makes 8 sandwiches
½ bunch rosemary, stems removed
1 bunch parsley
16 garlic cloves
1¼ cup olive oil
Zest of 2 lemons
1 tablespoon chili flakes
1 3- to 4-pound pork shoulder, boneless, butterflied
1 bunch broccoli rabe
Salt and pepper, to taste
8 slices aged provolone
8 kaiser rolls
8 long hot peppers
In a blender, combine rosemary, parsley, 8 garlic cloves, 1 cup olive oil, lemon zest, and chili flakes. Blend until smooth.
Spread herb mixture on butterflied pork shoulder. Season the pork generously with salt and pepper. Roll and tie the roast with butcher's twine.
In a Dutch oven, sear the roast on all sides over high heat.
Add enough chicken stock to half cover the roast. Cover with parchment paper.
Braise in a 325 degree oven for 2 to 2½ hours until tender but not falling apart.
Chill pork overnight in the braising liquid.
Remove twine and cut roast into ¼-inch thick slices. Reserve some braising liquid.
Sauté pork over medium-high heat in a little of the braising liquid to warm it through.
Using a separate pan, sauté broccoli rabe with 8 sliced garlic cloves in olive oil until tender. Season with salt and pepper as needed.
Slice rolls in half and warm in the oven.
In another pan, sauté long hot peppers until soft and lightly browned.
After rolls have been removed from the oven, turn the broiler on high.
Smash a roasted garlic clove on the inside of each roll and place pork, broccoli rabe, and provolone on each one.
Broil in the oven for about 2 minutes, until cheese is melted.
Cover with the other half of roll, and top each sandwich with a roasted long hot pepper. Serve warm.
Allison Steele is the food editor at philly.com.