Author Topic: Burts/Pequods  (Read 26596 times)

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Offline Lou Dog

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Burts/Pequods
« on: February 03, 2009, 04:49:52 PM »
There's a show on the Travel Channel called "No Reservations" with Anthony Bourdain.  Last night's episode featured Chicago and rather than go to Ginos or Unos or Malnatis, he decided to go to this little known place in Morton Grove called Burt's.  Now, I haven't been to Burt's, but I've been to Pequods (which he used to own), and the original is still in Morton Grove & there's also one in Chicago.  Both seem similar & yet also quite different from other Chicago style crusts in the fact that they carmelize the crust with cheese.  I imagine they just tuck in some mozzarella pieces into the outside crust before baking, but it's definitely unique..


Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2009, 05:03:57 PM »
Burt's is a well-known, highly-regarded, if quirky, pizza joint:

http://lthforum.com/bb/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=10102&st=0&sk=t&sd=a&hilit=Burts

Bill/SFNM

Offline Mad_Ernie

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2009, 05:11:18 PM »
I saw that episode, too. :D

Check out the Chicago Pizza Club's take on Burt's Place:

http://www.chicagopizzaclub.com/2008/07/burts-place-meeting-62.html
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Offline loowaters

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2009, 08:30:43 PM »
This was asked some time back but not a lot of discussion about it or anyone trying (or posting) results.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5425.0.html

Loo
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Offline Viewer

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2009, 12:11:54 AM »
And I'm still trying to figure out how... At least I can get to Burt's often.

Offline loowaters

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2009, 07:58:41 AM »
And I'm still trying to figure out how... At least I can get to Burt's often.

Any chance you can see them make the pie?

Also, did you ever try the white cheddar around the rim?
« Last Edit: February 10, 2009, 08:02:53 AM by loowaters »
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Offline X-Chicago Peter

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2009, 09:03:22 PM »
Any chance you can see them make the pie?

I was just in Chicago this weekend and went to Pequod's in Morton Grove--Burt's was too busy following Anthony Bourdain's show. I caught a peek into the kitchen and saw the pizza assembly. The caramelized crust is made by laying square slices of cheese up the side of the dough so that the corners stand about 1" above the crust. The cheese must melt over the crust and caramelize between the crust and the pan. I have not yet tried to recreate this. Let us know if you do.

-Peter
« Last Edit: February 10, 2009, 09:42:24 PM by X-Chicago Peter »

Offline loowaters

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2009, 07:05:37 AM »
The caramelized crust is made by laying square slices of cheese up the side of the dough so that the corners stand about 1" above the crust. The cheese must melt over the crust and caramelize between the crust and the pan.

Did it look like they pinched the dough up the side of the pan before they layed the cheese in or did it lay flat (just covering the bottom) in the pan using the cheese as the side of the "bowl" to hold in the toppings?

Loo
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Offline X-Chicago Peter

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2009, 08:06:08 AM »
The dough went up the pan ~2" and the cheese circled the inner edge of the dough.

-Peter

Offline BTB

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2009, 09:22:11 AM »
I don't think the dough went up 2" in the pan, at least when I frequently went to Burt's original Pequod's some years ago.  In my experience at Pequod's, the dough was laid flat in the pan and no crimping or pinching of the edges took place at all.  The cheese was laid to the edge of the pan and up the sides a bit.  From what little was shown on the recent TV show, this seemed to be the case from what I could tell.  I do not know what kind of cheese he used to give that carmelization affect, which is the best part of his style of pizza.  You cannot get that carmelization with pinching or crimping the dough 2" up the side of the pan.


Offline loowaters

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2009, 11:14:04 AM »
BTB, because you've got a good sense for this stuff (and I need another post to draw back to even with you  :P), what characteristics does the crust have without consideration for the edges of the pie.  Is it at all similar to Malnati's?  Giordano's?  Gino's?  If it is similar to any of these, we're already familiar with the formulations.  Just adjusting the amount of dough in the pan to cover the bottom, then bringing that cheese up the sides is an easy modification to get this effect.  You'd have no exposed crust that would burn allowing you to leave the pie in as long as it takes for that cheese to do it's thing, with consideration for burning the bottom of the pie, but that can be easily managed.

I believe Michael Chiarello once refered to cheese that's been fried in this fashion as a "frigo".  He did it with shredded sharp yellow cheddar in a pan and used those "frigos" as the cheese for some burgers...I think.

Loo
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Offline BTB

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2009, 02:59:49 PM »
Loo, I remember Burt making the pizzas at lunch time at Pequod's when me and my work luncheon buddies wanted to go somewhere else other than Malnati's (or Burt's original place, Gulliver's, on Howard St. near Evanston).  This was a number of years ago, but I think his pizzas have remained the same throughout.  His crust was nothing like Malnati's, Uno's or Gino's (or Giordano's, which is much dryer than the others).  It was a softer crust much like Pizza Hut's pan pizza.  Or more of a round Sicilian style crust, I think.  Since I've learned some of the pizzamaking vernacular since eating his style of pizza, I would say his dough is kneaded much more than typical deep dish style.  Still very good, and it has it's unique characteristics.  Truthfully, while I remember some caramelized aspects of the edges of his crust, I do not remember as much about that as has been recently written up about it and attributed to his deep dish pizza.  But it's another style that -- before you leave this earth -- is worth trying.
                                                                        :-D       --BTB

Offline Viewer

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #12 on: February 11, 2009, 07:14:17 PM »
Any chance you can see them make the pie?

Also, did you ever try the white cheddar around the rim?
I'm not sure I've tried white cheddar, but yellow cheddar didn't produce the desired effect. It seemed too dry, rather than caramelized. Mozzarella didn't work either.

As for the crust thickness, he doesn't build up the edges.

Offline Harrison

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #13 on: March 01, 2009, 12:36:02 AM »
Awesome forum, folks.  Just found it tonight.

Any chance you can see them make the pie?
Last time I was in Burt's, he had an older newspaper article on the wall from shortly after he started "Burt's Place" (after selling Pequod's).   He refers to the style as "charred crust".  The reporter also asked whether Burt gave lessons, and got a no as the response. :(

I've tried googling for recipes, but no luck.

Offline vcb

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2010, 04:50:27 PM »
I'm not sure I've tried white cheddar, but yellow cheddar didn't produce the desired effect. It seemed too dry, rather than caramelized. Mozzarella didn't work either.

As for the crust thickness, he doesn't build up the edges.

I'm not sure color has anything to do with the cheese. It might be a mild vs. sharp vs. extra sharp thing.
I'm going to try a test run with kraft 'extra sharp' cheddar that I have in my fridge, but my best guess would be that deli-style 'black-wax' cheddar (boar's head?) or hoffman super sharp is what they're probably using at pequod's for the outside caramelized crust. The square slices that X-Chicago mentioned are what are making me think this (unless they're pulling a fast one on all of us and using something like deli style american). 

Which dough recipe would you guys recommend for my Pequod clone? Something like a Pizza Hut pan dough?
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Offline DKM

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #15 on: January 22, 2010, 07:18:18 PM »
Here is the clip from the show.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0iys-vgD6M" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0iys-vgD6M</a>
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Offline Davydd

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #16 on: January 22, 2010, 07:26:40 PM »
Burt's is on my bucket list of places to try. A roadfood friend works there I think on Saturday nights. It is just a long haul from Minnesota to Chicago for me so it remains on the list at this time. Savuer magazine first featured Burt's which I presume got Anthony Bourdain to make a No Reservations visit. You just can't beat that kind of publicity. But there had to be some substance for those two things to happen.
Davydd

Offline loowaters

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #17 on: January 22, 2010, 08:15:00 PM »
After watching Bourdain's show and his stop at Burt's I recall it just being mozz that he uses.  When forming the pie he doesn't pull the dough up the sides but creates a bowl effect with the cheese slices coming up the sides that melt down the sides and char during cooking. 

Loo
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Offline vcb

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #18 on: January 22, 2010, 09:26:03 PM »
After watching Bourdain's show and his stop at Burt's I recall it just being mozz that he uses.  When forming the pie he doesn't pull the dough up the sides but creates a bowl effect with the cheese slices coming up the sides that melt down the sides and char during cooking. 

Loo


Thanks, Loo. I saw that too and thought maybe Pequod's may have veered a bit off course from what Burt does.
I was just at Pequods last week (http://virtualcheeseburger.blogspot.com/2010/01/late-night-at-quods.html)
 and noticed that they have quite a bit more charred cheese on the outside than was visible on the pizza Bourdain was eating from Burt's.
Unfortunately, I didn't think to take a picture of the outside of the crust when I was there, but I did find a photo that someone posted online that shows what I'm talking about: http://farm1.static.flickr.com/42/85873229_5277873e1d.jpg.

Anyway, I currently have a Pepperoni Pequod/Lou Malnati hybrid pie in the oven as we speak (as well as my home-made italian sausage test pizza).
I used Boars Head 'black wax' sharp cheddar which I draped over a flat dough (no raised lip). The bottom of the pie is a combination of low moisture part skim mozz and some of the black wax cheddar. It's currently bubbling nicely and I will post pics.

update:  pics are up on my blog - http://virtualcheeseburger.blogspot.com/2010/01/home-made-italian-sausage-deep-dish-and.html

The cheddar worked good for me, but I still have to work on the timing of the ingredients. I may have to cover the pepperoni halfway thru cooking to keep it from burning while the outer crust chars.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2010, 04:06:34 AM by vcb »
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Offline BTB

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Re: Burts/Pequods
« Reply #19 on: January 23, 2010, 08:24:48 AM »
Ed, excellent looking pizzas and pictures.  A couple of thoughts:  I, too, had the over-crispness problem with pepperoni and now generally add it on after the pizza has cooked a while, like for the last 15  or 20 minutes or so.  If you can find it, suggest trying Canadian mild white cheddar instead of sharp cheddar along with mozzarella.  A friend of mine had some success with that.  And suggest trying a Sicilian dough recipe, if you hadn't already, but cut back on the yeast.  Because of all your many testings, I trust you have a lot of pizza eaters around you.
                                                      --BTB               :-D