By Ezra Klein
Arguably, I shouldn’t be expecting too much culinary authenticity from a pizza vending machine. But this vending machine is in Italy. My understanding is that putting, say, pineapple on a pizza in Italy is punishable by death, or at least by loud exclamations accompanied by energetic hand movements. Which is, of course, how it should be.
But back to the vending machine. “The machine does not just slip a frozen pizza into a microwave,” reports the New York Times. “It actually whips up flour, water, tomato sauce and fresh ingredients to produce a piping hot pizza in about three minutes.” Impressive! But…how?
I’ve made pizza a few times. I’ve made pizza a few different ways. But I’ve never encountered a pizza recipe where the dough didn’t require a substantial resting period. Peter Reinhart’s recipe, for instance, lets the dough sit overnight. Mark Bittman brings the speed with a quick two-hour rest. So how is this being accomplished without any resting at all? Is a chemical speeding the process? Is the dough being formed without yeast? Are the Italians making fun of us convenience-obsessed Americans by planting a hilarious story about a magic vending machine that makes pizza in under four minutes?