With beach views and fire pits, the Dining Deck of Santa Monica Place has quickly become a popular public space in Los Angeles. In this lovely setting sits Pizza Antica — not to be confused with Antica Pizzeria. With four locations in California, Executive Chef Gordon Drysdale's American-inspired Italian food is market-driven with a seasonal rotation of increasingly popular pizzas. Their Roman-style pies have a thin, crisp crust with absolutely no sag.
We visited with director of operations Robert Smith and Chef Guillermo Cortez to get a behind-the-scenes look at the Broccoli Rabe, Caciocavalo, Burrata and Chili Oil pie. Introduced last December, it has quickly become the most popular seasonal pizza. This pizza is distinguished by its roasted garlic paste base and chili oil, giving every bite a savory spark. Bel Gioroso caciocavallo, a traditional Italian style pin-shaped cheese hung from ropes for aging, gives this pizza a unique flavor. If caciocavalo isn't available, provolone can be substituted.
What you'll need for one pizza:
- 1 portion of dough (here's one by Chef Drysdale)
- 1 bunch of broccoli rabe
- 1 red onion
- caciocavallo (can use provolone)
- salt and pepper
- extra virgin olive oil
- 20 cloves of garlic
- canola oil
- 1/4 cup hot long chili pepper
- 3/4 cup olive oil