My GF and I were in New York a couple of months ago to see NPH in "Hedwig and the Angry Inch". We arrived early in the day, dropped off our bags, and immediately hopped a train to Mount Vernon to eat at Johnny's Pizzeria. I can understand why Jeff Varasano rates it as his number one pizza. Thin, light...Just the right amount of cheese and sauce with a balanced flavor that still crosses my mind regularly. I highly recommend Johnny's as a true destination place for pizza.
I've been reading and studying, and finally attempted a Johnny's clone. Their pizza dough has a fermented note to it. Their tomatoes are bright and their chees is buttery, with a little funk
They use Tomato Magic with olive oil added. I used Classico crushed tomatoes that I pushed through a coarse food mill plate and added 10% by weigh of Partanna olive oil.
I'm guessing they use Grande mozzarella. I used Polly-O deli sliced mozzarella, as it was the closest to the taste that I wanted. For one pizza, I lightly sprinkled grated sharp cheddar on the skin before I shingled the mozzarella.
My GF and I both were really happy with the results and we both agreed that this was an "A minus" effort. If only I had more heat!
I made a poolish of half the dough's total weight, using half the IDY for the recipe. Twelve hours later I combined the poolish with the remaining ingredients and mixed for 4-5 minutes.
I turned the dough out onto the counter, covered, and performed 3 stretch and folds over two hours. I balled the dough and placed the balls in my wine cooler at 64F for 36 hours.
I pulled out a ball, dusted it with flour and rolled (yes, rolled) it out to 11-12 inches, then knuckle stretched the dough to 15-16 inches.
I shingled thinly sliced mozzarella, ladled on the tomato, sprinkled a touch of black pepper, then dusted the pizza with Locatelli pecorino romano cheese.
The flavor and texture was very close to Johnny's. Sadly, my oven cannot get to the temps needed to provide the char that is characteristic of a true Johnny's pizza
Flour (100%): 749.84 g | 26.45 oz | 1.65 lbs
Water (60%): 449.91 g | 15.87 oz | 0.99 lbs
Salt (2%): 15 g | 0.53 oz | 0.03 lbs | 2.69 tsp | 0.9 tbsp
IDY (.056%): 0.42 g | 0.01 oz | 0 lbs | 0.14 tsp | 0.05 tbsp
Oil (1.5%): 11.25 g | 0.4 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.5 tsp | 0.83 tbsp
Total (163.556%): 1226.41 g | 43.26 oz | 2.7 lbs | TF = 0.0816
Single Ball: 408.8 g | 14.42 oz | 0.9 lbs
Flour: 306.6 g | 10.81 oz | 0.68 lbs
Water: 306.6 g | 10.81 oz | 0.68 lbs
Total: 613.21 g | 21.63 oz | 1.35 lbs
Flour: 443.24 g | 15.63 oz | 0.98 lbs
Water: 143.3 g | 5.05 oz | 0.32 lbs
Salt: 15 g | 0.53 oz | 0.03 lbs | 2.69 tsp | 0.9 tbsp
IDY: 0.42 g | 0.01 oz | 0 lbs | 0.14 tsp | 0.05 tbsp
Preferment: 613.21 g | 21.63 oz | 1.35 lbs
Oil: 11.25 g | 0.4 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.5 tsp | 0.83 tbsp
Total: 1226.41 g | 43.26 oz | 2.7 lbs | TF = 0.0816
1. Johnny's pizza
3. Mine 1
4. Mine 2