Detroit-Style Pizza is Your New Favorite Pizza

Detroit Style Pizza

Look at that giant brick of cheese. Just look at it. Under that dazzling layer of cheese, prosciutto, and balsamic goodness lies all sorts of delectable toppings and a thick, chewy crust. What is this? Detroit-style pizza! I’m sure some areas of the country are more familiar with this treat than I am, but allow me to gush for a few minutes.

After a particularly long day/night at SXSW, I was grabbing a beer with some friends at a beer bar called Craft Pride when a food truck in the backyard caught my eye. Via 313 has a reputation for being some of the best pizza around Austin, but I’d never checked it out before. I’m not always a huge pizza person—I have to be in a certain mood. That night, after walking miles around town to different festival events and drinking a few brews, I was definitely in that mood. I wandered up to the window and ordered the most rich, indulgent variety I saw. The Cadillac: gorgonzola cheese, fig preserves, shaved prosciutto, shaved parmesan, and balsamic glaze. “For $16, it better be as good as people say,” I thought to myself.

When the pizza was carried out to our table, I was kind of surprised by how thick and…square it was. This is deep-dish like I’ve never seen deep-dish before. Generous on the toppings with the sauce (in this case, balsamic instead of tomato) as the very top layer, this was a bit daunting to bite into but gloriously greasy and satisfying once I took the plunge.

What makes Detroit-style pizza so decadent and special? As the Via 313 menu explains:

Detroit-style pizza features a semi-thick but light and airy crust (similar in texture to focaccia bread). The pizza is baked in industrial steel pans from the Motor City that were traditionally used to hold small machine parts in automotive assembly lines. The pans allow for the cheese to be baked all the way around, creating a delicious caramelized cheese edge.

While I generally eat more thin crust pizza, I really looove me some deep-dish and this one takes the cake (or pie?) Those crispy corners with the caramelized cheese and crunchy-on-the-outside, soft-and-chewy-on-the-inside texture are probably the best part. I’m definitely a Detroit-style convert.

Detroit Style Pizza Slice

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Artsy Photo of the Day: Bleu des Basques Blossoms

Carillon Pansy Panna Cotta

How lovely! I sampled this Bleu Des Basques Panna Cotta at an event called the Official Drink of Austin here last Thursday. There were more creative cocktails and bar bites than one stomach could handle, but this flowery creation from Austin restaurant The Carillon wins my personal prize for the prettiest dish. It tasted as good as it looked, too. (You can check out the full recap of Official Drink of Austin here!)

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Bacon, Spinach, Swiss & Caramelized Onion Dip

I know the Super Bowl is over (GO HAWKS OMG!) but I see no reason why I can’t share my latest dip recipe with you. I mean, DIP! Who doesn’t love it? It’s not like you can’t eat dip just because football season is over (*sob*). After all, we still have basketball, Oscars, random Saturday nights when you feel like staying on the couch with a box of wine, Costco-size bag of chips, and bucket of dip all night, etc… So here we go.

Bacon Spinach Onion Dip

This isn’t anything revolutionary, but it’s all of the best snacking kind of flavors combined into one. Salty bacon? Yep. Sweet caramelized onion? You know it. Refreshing spinach? Heck yes, you’re getting your iron, son!  Savory, cheesy…cheese? YES! I tried to keep it kiiiinda light by incorporating some lowfat ingredients in my Creamy Dip Trinity (cream cheese, mayo, sour cream) but let’s be real. You’re eating bacon pulverized into a dairy base, so “light” is pretty relative in this case. But it’s worth it.

Bacon, Spinach, Swiss, & Caramelized Onion Dip

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Tenerife’s Top Five Tapas

These days, it seems like there’s a tapas restaurant in every city in every country on earth—we even found one in Iceland a few years ago—but when I asked my fellow passengers on our way to Tenerife (in the Canary Islands) for recommendations for tapas restaurants, I got a resounding “Qué?”

This is because traditionally, tapas are not considered a Canarian dish, even thought the Canary Islands are technically part of Spain. Visitors travel to the Canary Islands in their droves, thanks to the abundant cheap flights to Tenerife and Lanzarote, and they have always been presented with plenty of delicious traditional local dishes such as fish casserole to enjoy along the beachfront.

But in recent years tapas have become more common here, as it is in mainland Spain. So with this in mind, here are my top 5 tapas dishes that have a Canarian twist…

1. Pimientos de Padrón

One of the most simple tapas dishes, pimientos de padrón is a special variety of pepper, cooked in oil and sprinkled with rock salt. However, beware the sting in the tail, as while most pimientos are very mild, you get the occasional surprise spicy one that will knock your socks off, so be careful!

2. Croquetas Caseras

(Photo: Pincas Photos)

(Photo: Pincas Photos)

Croquetas caseras are small fried balls of almost any filling, usually white fish or ham mixed with potato, but many fillings are possible. We found croquetas caseras that were filled with chicken, tuna and spinach as well, and not only are they delicious, they are also very filling.

3. Carne Fiesta

(Photo: Pamela Stocks)

(Photo: Pamela Stocks)

A dish that will tingle your tastebuds, carne fiesta is the name given to small cubes of pork that has been marinated in garlic, thyme, oregano, spicy peppers, salt, paprika, wine vinegar and white wine. The cubes are then fried to make deliciously tender and moreish meat treats.

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Food Porn of the Day: Jamaican Pizza

I’m not usually the world’s #1 pizza craver but when I’m in the mood I’m IN THE MOOD, and lately I’ve been in the mood thanks to the discovery of my boy Macaulay Culkin’s pizza-themed Velvet Underground cover band. (WHAT? Yes. Culkin will always hold a special place in my heart and VU is my all-time favorite band, so this bit of breaking news is extremely relevant to my interests.)

A few days ago I fulfilled my cravings with a funky pizza party and I just had to share it with everyone. This combination is truly a Christmas miracle that I think everyone should try for themselves immediately:

East Side Pies Jamaican Pizza

Jerk chicken, pineapple, red onion, jalapeño, habanero, and avocado. AVOCADO. Its cool creaminess is the perfect foil for all that heat. I got this sucker from East Side Pies here in Austin. I wrote about their lil smokies & egg creation last year, but I figured this revelation of flavors deserves another mention. Macaulay should write a song about this.

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Leftover City: Pumpkin-Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yet another recipe involving pumpkin from yours truly. What can I say, it’s Thanksgiving time! If you’re wondering what you’re going to do with all that leftover pumpkin puree from your Thanksgiving pumpkin pie recipe, I have one for you. It’s easy, cheap, tasty, and healthy without tasting particularly like a health food. You can serve a couple of these as a main course, or use one as a nice, hearty side with your turkey leftovers. Either way, you’re looking at a complete protein, fiber, veggies, and a little bit of savory indulgence (blue cheeeeeese!) all at once. Win win win.

Pumpkin-Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

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