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A spectrum of crust doneness. [Photographs: Adam Kuban]

Friend of Slice Adam "The Amateur Gourmet" Roberts unknowingly walks into a minefield while trying to explain to friends the difference between burned and charred pizza:

Then Kristin asked the question that leads us to this post: "Why do they burn the pizza like this in New York?" She held up her slice showing the charred bottom and the charred crust.

"That's not burned!" I screamed. "That's charred!"

Heads turned.

"But it's black, it's carcinogenic.... that doesn't taste good."

"Yes it tastes good," I spit, hysterical.

Kristin, who used to work at Pagliacci Pizza in Seattle, said: "Well if I cooked a pizza like this at my old job, they'd make me cook it again."

I feel that we on Slice have all worked past this issue already in a poll-cum-group-therapy session. One of my favorite comments about the whole issue from that episode came from Kenito: "It's exactly like toast. You take it too far and you can't eat it and it smells burnt, not enough and it's not properly toasted and lacking that signature toasted taste and aroma. And, of course, people like every shade in between."

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