New York Style Pizza: Ray’s Pizza
New York Style Pizza
There is a rule somewhere that says while you are in New York city you must have some pizza. Not just any pizza either – it has to be New York style pizza. Truthfully, if it isn’t a rule – it should be! New York style pizza is special and fabulous!
New York Style Pizza: What is the difference?
What makes New York Style Pizza so special is the crust. It is very thin, hand tossed and has a high gluten type bread flour. Some say the water makes all the difference in the world, too, because of minerals unique to New York City water. Some feel so strongly about the water being the magic ingredient, that is is often shipped cross country to be included in crust!
New York Style Pizza: How do you eat it?
New York Style pizzas are really big – usually 18 inches and cut into 8 slices. These large slices are then eaten by folding them in 1/2 to eat. The fold keeps all the toppings from falling off when you try to eat it.
New York Style Pizza: How long has it been around?
The very first pizzeria in the country was opened right here in New York city in 1905. Gennaro Lombardi, an immigrant from Naples, Italy opened a grocery store which sold pizzas baked in the store. Entire pizzas cost 5 cents, but since people couldn’t afford the whole pizza, they started selling slices. The pizza maker, Antonio Totonno Pero, later left to open his own pizza place on Coney Island called Totonno’s.
Pizza itself though has been around since….drum roll, please….. 997 AD. Yep, the word pizza appears in a Latin text saying that the tenant was supposed to give the bishop 12 pizzas every Christmas day and again on Easter Sunday. I can think of worse payments can’t you?
New York Style Pizza: Ray’s Pizza
This chain has had a lot of changing hands and arguing over who is the original ‘Ray’. There are quite a few people who insist they are the original Ray of Ray’s Pizza.
What is awesome about Ray’s is you can duck in off the street and quickly have a slice of pizza heaven to go. There was one just a stone’s throw from the hotel we stayed at during our last New York visit The Renaissance Hotel Times Square.
I like veggies on my pizza. I really do like veggies, but they also make me feel a little less guilty about eating pizza. Whatever works, right? All the pizza starts the same way – thin crust, a little bit of sauce, mozzarella cheese and then yummy toppings. Choose the topping you love or the one that makes you feel the least guilty. They are all delicious!
Why mozzarella cheese?? Well, because it is simply the best at baking. Mozarella has the least free oil, the highest moisture, and good elasticity. Yes, people apparently measure such things. I’d love to bump into someone at a party one day and hear “I measure cheese elasticity at work. What do you do?” LOL!
Another thing to love about Ray’s is the atmosphere. This feels like the real New York – gritty, busy, in a hurry. Step up to the counter and give your order to the pizza guy. He will be a man of few words. No need to chit chat here – order your pizza and move on. As a very friendly and talkative Texan this is an interesting experience. Enjoy it because when in Rome – do as the Romans do! Real New York style pizza in New York is a GREAT and very tasty experience.
The Educational Tourist’s Traveling Food Rules:
Rule Number One: Not all sightseeing is done with your eyes.
Try the local fare. Try what is unique and different! Compare to the way things are cooked back home. Which do you like better? Find a recipe and see if you can recreate at home.
Rule Number Two: Calories on vacation don’t count!
Have a piece of dessert. Have a glass of wine. Eat the chocolate they leave when they turn down the sheets at the hotel. Have gelato in Italy! Enjoy waffles in Belgium! Eat the bread in Paris! Live it up and……count calories and exercise when you get home. Life is short – enjoy it!
If you are headed to the big apple, you’ll be interested in my review of the perfectly located Renaissance Hotel right in Times Square. Wondering what to do while you are in New York? Read my posts on The Guggenheim Museum and Estiatorio Milos Restaurant for some great traveling ideas!
Happy pizza travels!
Natalie, The Educational Tourist