Little Furnace Baltic Market
Back in early 2013, two pals Peter and Ryan had their first taste of Neapolitan pizza, while on holiday in Palermo; four years later, they were serving up their own version from this stall in Baltic Market and had the keys to their Smithdown Road restaurant. They’re still going strong.
At Little Furnace, we’re taking UNESCO heritage status pizza, as in Naples style. This is not ‘thin and crispy’ pizza. If it’s thin and cripsy pizza you’re after, look elsewhere.
Prepared using special flour (here, Tipo ’00’ or Tipo ‘0’), a sourdough culture and a good number of hours (no less than eight, but at Little Furnace more like between 25 and 55), adorned with high-quality toppings then traditionally cooked quickly in a super-hot wood-fired oven, Neapolitan (Napoletana) pizza is intentionally soft and cloudy, fold-up-able and in-mouth-put-able. It’s also very digestible, so you can put those Rennies back in your handbag, missus.
Toppings wise, the boys offer both classic combinations and their own creations, plus vegan and vegetarian alongside more meaty offerings. At the Baltic Market stall, there are just six choices – margherita, pepperoni, ham and mushroom, goats cheese and peppers, chilli inferno (choose from meat, with chorizo, or vegan, with piquante peppers), and the white base artichoke and olive bianca – plus a board for daily specials and “extras”.
Within those choices, however, there are endless possibilities, with a selection of recommended tweaks – add truffle, porcini or chilli oil to the bianca, for example, or how about anchovies and Kalamata olives on the margherita for a poor man’s puttanesca? Ingredients are authentically Italian: n’duja sausage, prosciutto cotto ham, fior di latte, buffalo and Parmesan cheeses… and there’s a vegan mozzarella to boot.
There are no bookings at Baltic Market – just rock up and you’ll be seated, usually within five or ten minutes. It’s table service, including drinks, so sit back and relax, and bear in mind Little Furnace’s slogan: “Be prepared for love at first slice.”
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