Filed Under: Food, Kids, Lunch, main-dish, meatballs, Pizza, Recipe, School Lunch

NYC Meatball Deep-Fried Pizza

One huge meatball on a deep fried pizza crust with sugo (sauce) and lemony, peppery arugula. How does it get better than that?

August 31st, 2015

From Street Food Diaries by Matt Basile

New York City: home to the Yankees, construction workers tearing up the roads, and big saucy meatballs ovah’here (voice à la Joe Pesci).
Serves 5 to 6
  • Pizza Dough:
  • 1 cup (250 mL) lukewarm water
  • 1 package (2 1/4 tsp/12 mL) quick-rising dry yeast
  • 2 cups (500 mL) all-purpose flour
  • Splash of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon (15 mL) granulated sugar
  • Meat Balls:
  • 1/2 lb (250 g) ground pork
  • 1/2 lb (250 g) ground beef
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) dried breadcrumbs
  • 3 tablespoons (45 mL) kosher salt, divided
  • 1 tablespoon (15 mL) black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon (15 mL) dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) chili flakes
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) garlic powder
  • 4 oz (100 g) piece Parmesan cheese
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup (250 mL) lukewarm water, divided
  • 1 Spanish onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) finely diced garlic
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons (100 mL) olive oil
  • 1 can (28 oz/796 mL) crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cups (500 mL) arugula
  • 1/2cup (125 mL) fresh basil
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  1. Make the pizza dough: Add the yeast to the cup (250 mL) of lukewarm (make sure it’s not hot) water. Let it stand for approximately 5 minutes at room temperature, or until it begins to bubble. Then add the olive oil, salt, and sugar to the cup. Stir it well.

  2. Add 1 tablespoon salt to 2 cups (500 mL) of the flour and place this and the yeast mixture in a large mixing bowl. Mix everything well with your hands until you have a bowl of dough. Add a splash more olive oil, and give one more mix before you cover the bowl with a damp cloth. Place it in a warm area for approximately 1 hour, or until the dough doubles in size. Pour the remaining 1 cup (250 mL) of flour onto a cutting board, dump the dough mixture onto it, and work it into the flour with your hands.

  3. Cut the dough into 3 oz portions (about the size of your palm) and roll into individual balls. Place the dough balls on a baking sheet, cover it all with a plastic bag, and throw it in the fridge until you’re ready to fry it.

  4. Make the meat balls: Mix the ground pork and ground beef together in a bowl. Add the breadcrumbs, 2 tablespoons (30 mL) of the salt, the black pepper, oregano, chili flakes, garlic powder, and a little bit of grated Parm with the eggs and 1/2 cup (125 mL) of the water. Mix thoroughly with your mighty hands. Form the meatballs into roughly six imperfect balls. If you do the typical perfect ball thing they just don’t come out as tender. In a pan over high heat, sear each meatball for approximately 2 minutes on each side or until the exterior of the meatballs are brown. Set aside the seared meatballs until you are ready to add them to the sauce.

  5. Make the sugo (sauce): Toss the onion and garlic into a food processor until still a little bit chunky. In a large pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil and add the garlic and onions. Cook for approximately 5 minutes, or until the onion becomes translucent. Be sure to stir them as they cook so the garlic doesn’t burn. Add the can of tomatoes and one can of water (using the tomato can as your measure). Turn down the heat to medium-low, and cook the sauce, uncovered, for approximately 1 hour or until it has reduced a little. Throw the seared meatballs in at the 30- minute mark, and let them cook slowly in the sauce until the hour or so has been reached. Add additional Parmesan cheese to the sauce and meatballs.

  6. Build the 'za: Place the arugula and basil in a bowl, and dress it with lemon juice and a little bit of salt for seasoning. Deep-fry the pizza dough. Dress the pizza crust with the arugula-basil salad. Top the pizza with the meatball sauce, and grate a little more cheese over it before serving.

NYC Meatball Deep-Fried Pizza
Kyla Zanardi

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