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Edible South Florida Summer 2013 : Page26

Scuola Vecchia NEAPOLITAN STYLE A few years ago, New Yorkers – usually a pretty demanding bunch when it comes to pizza – got worked into a lather over a new place called Keste. Keste was opened by Roberto Caporuscio, president of the U.S. chapter of the Associazione Pizzaiuoli Napoletani (APN), an Italian organization dedicated to preserving and fostering the traditions of Neapolitan pizza-making. Keste not only made great pizza – it was also a training ground for others who wanted to learn the Neapolitan arts. The pizzaiolos at Scuola Vecchia in Delray Beach were among Keste’s disciples. “Scuola Vecchia” means “old school,” and the name is fitting. It is a true Neapolitan-style pizzeria, actually certified as such by the APN. To get such certification, they use special Caputo “00” flour imported from Italy for the dough, San Marzano tomatoes for the sauce and fresh homemade mozzarella made from imported curds, and it’s all baked in a gorgeous wood-burning oven imported from Italy. The end result emerges from that indigo-tiled oven, which reaches temperatures near 1000°, in about a minute. The classic “Regina Margherita” pizza supposedly was first created for the late 19th century Italian queen, incorporating the colors of the new Italian flag – red (tomatoes), white (mozzarella cheese) and green (basil). Scuola Vecchia’s version is equally worthy of royalty: a chewy crust with spots of smoky char; a light-handed smear of sauce perfectly balanced between tart and sweet, dotted with blistered cherry tomatoes; soft, milky mozzarella; and fresh basil just barely crisped from the oven’s heat. Or for another tasty history lesson, try the “Mast’nicola,” the ur-pizza dating back to the 16th century, topped only with pecorino romano cheese and a sheen of salty, porky lard. Scuola Vecchia 522 E. Atlantic Avenue, Delray Beach 561-865-5923 +/ ∙ summer 2013 ∙ edible

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