Manischewitz put on a 3-day free pop-up at Chelsea Market in NYC. The event featured recipe tastings, an interactive s’mores-making station, a chocolate fountain for macaroon dipping, a giant gumball machine that dispensed macaroons, and chef demos.
The only cheese on the premise was at the matzo pizza station.
At “Manni’s Pizzeria” (get it?), Manischewitz’s Thin Salted matzos served as the base for two types of pizza: Manni’s Margherita Matzo Pizza and Matzo Pizza with Pesto, Tomatoes, and Fresh Mozzarella.
As much as I begged and pleaded, I was only able to taste the pesto/tomatoes/fresh mozzarella pizza “Only one per person!” the server said. The pizza I tried was very good. It was made with shredded mozzarella. I liked the thin matzos because they were reminiscent of a thin crust pizza with softness on top from the sauce, and a bit of crunch underneath. The sauce, pesto, and hot melted cheese transformed a crisp, flaky cracker into a softer, more dough-like crust.
Of course I was curious about whose cheeses these were as I know a lot of people in kosher cheese. I asked the guy making the pizzas about the cheese, but he didn’t know as he was just there to cook.
By chance, Chef Richard of Main Event Caterers of Englewood, NJ, had just come out of the curtained kitchen for a moment. I asked him about the cheeses and he invited me into the kitchen. The shredded low-moisture mozzarella was a blend of Natural & Kosher’s and Haolam’s, both cholov yisroel.
Next he showed me a box full of fresh mozzarella balls and I immediately recognized the Natural & Kosher label. This company puts out a line of excellent cheeses of all sorts.
I am sorry to have missed the Matzo Pizza Margherita, but I can make my own. Margherita pizza typically is made of fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil. The red, green, and white of the ingredients represent the colors of the Italian flag. According to popular tradition, in 1889, 28 years after the unification of Italy, Queen Margherita made a visit to Naples. In her honor and in the spirit of new-found Italian patriotism, a pizza maker and his wife created a pizza to mirror the Italian flag, and named it Pizza Margherita.
In this picture, there is a bucket of N&K’s fresh mozzarella sliced straight from the ovoline balls, ready to go on the matzo for the Pizza Margherita.
Get the matzo. Get the cheese and let Pesach begin!
Elizabeth Bland, Cheese Mistress