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Where pizza calls, lasagna answers

Original post made on Sep 19, 2014

My mother never made lasagna. We ate spaghetti Bolognese every Thursday, although we just called it noodles with meat sauce. No frills, and sprinkled with Parmesan cheese from that familiar green cardboard tube. No lasagna in our family. It wasn't until later that I experienced the layered pleasures of sheet pasta.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, September 19, 2014, 12:00 AM

Comments (4)

Posted by Lina
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 19, 2014 at 4:44 pm

The anchovies used in the Pizza in Italy hare keep under salt to keep them good for long time and hare supposed to give saltiness to the pizza , and the polipetti I had at doppio zero were perfect , the best way to cook octopuss is to cook it with little o no water at all so they cook on the water that comes out of them which is salty because of the sea water they live in , Polipetti at doppio zero 10+

Posted by Max Hauser
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 19, 2014 at 4:48 pm

Max Hauser is a registered user.

Your rhapsodic description of the lasagne is contagious! Thanks for the tip.

Unconstrained by the Embarcadero papers' internal wait-a-while restaurant-review policy, I've eaten at Doppio many times since it opened in Feb. -- but mainly pizzas, I knew nothing of lasagne. Doppio Zero's owners vowed not just to bring true Naples-style pizzas (offered for years now at Napoletana Pizzeria on ECR) to downtown MV, but also to match Napoletana's achievement of certification by the stringent Naples AVPN trade group, joining a handful of other AVPN Affiliati in the Bay Area. More in my notes on Doppio, posted to this web site in Feb.: Web Link

Note also (unless the source has dwindled), Doppio's "Alberto" pizza, which you reported, is made not just with bolete mushrooms (which Italy nicknames piglets, "porcini"), but slices of the whole mushrooms -- not the common dried ones (which have completely different character, even after rehydration). Boletes even grow wild in the Bay Area in wet months, but Doppio, of course, opened in a drought Winter, so has gotten the mushrooms frozen, from Italy I think.

You might also enjoy the current online discussion with an Italian expatriate "Lina" re authenticity -- in comments to Elena K's blog about another new Castro St. restaurant. That discussion cites Doppio and Napoletana; coincidentally, Lina just this hour described the lasagne at another Italianate MV restaurant (Venti). I share Lina's sense that classic Italian-recipe lasagnes (especially the true "Bolognese" from Emilia-Romagna) are delicately layered and firm, serving up "like a piece of cake" -- but I like tasty food, whatever shape it comes.
Discussion: Web Link

Posted by Max Hauser
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 19, 2014 at 4:56 pm

Max Hauser is a registered user.

Lina and I just posted here in parallel.

Lina, I have also tried those same "salty" pizzas at Doppio, and my friends and I reacted just like Dale Bentson. I believe the reason is that the tomato sauce on Doppio's "Napoletana" is already fully seasoned, for use on other pizza types; then on the Napoletana it meets not just anchovies, but salted olives, and the result is out of balance.

Compare Napoletana Pizzeria, whose proprietor Kostas shows a very delicate sense of balance and salt. Most of his tomato sauces have no salt at all (only a little saltiness from ground pecorino, added to the sauce), and they rely on the topping ingredients, including cheese, to balance the seasoning. Napoletana offers optional (rather delicate) anchovies with any pizza, and when added to a standard type such as the Margherita, the result remains FAR less salty than what Doppio is currently making with its anchovy version.

Posted by Lina
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 19, 2014 at 5:23 pm

I agree with you if the olives were salty too and as Dale says the anchovies where also in the sauce that is really too much , the taste can be unpleasant and unbalanced !
Dale I have to say that your description of the lasagna makes me wanting to get ready and go right now at doppio zero , or go to my kitchen and start cooking it .

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