When I was asked to develop a dish to serve at the Meatopia Festival in New York, the thought of going bold with beef and pizza led to this inspiration. We used eye of round from certified Piedmontese steer and, from a truck with a mounted pizza oven, we presented carpaccio on baked pizza dough. With a thin, nicely charred crust, fresh rosemary, nutty arugula, and quality beef with a squeeze of lemon, it’s out-of-this-world good! If you feel like splurging—and we couldn’t that day, since we had to serve 3,000 people—use filet mignon.
1 1/2 pounds eye of round, trimmed of fat and sinew, chilled for 10 minutes in the freezer
Extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Leaves from 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
4 ounces baby arugula
5 lemons, each cut into 8 wedges
1Place a pizza stone in the oven and preheat to 500°F for 1 hour before baking. (Or preheat a wood-fired pizza oven to very hot, 4 hours before baking.)
2One hour before baking, using a very sharp knife, thinly slice the beef against the grain, until you have about 40 slices. (You could also have a butcher do this for you, but you’d need to come home and prepare this immediately so it doesn’t discolor.) Place the carpaccio slices in 1 layer on wax paper and refrigerate until ready to use.
3Drizzle olive oil on 1 disc of dough, season with salt and pepper to taste, and sprinkle one-fourth of the rosemary on top.
4Gently place the pizza on the pizza stone and bake for about 5 minutes, until golden with slight signs of charring. (If using a wood-fired oven, gently place the pizza on the oven floor, and bake for 3 minutes, or until golden and crisp.)
5Remove the pizza from the oven, set aside to cool, and repeat with the remaining 3 pizza discs.
6Transfer the pizzas to a cutting board, and slice each one into 8 to 10 slices each. Lay 1 or 2 slices of carpaccio over each pizza slice, sprinkle with arugula, and serve with a lemon wedge.
IMPORTANTE! If you’re hand-slicing the carpaccio yourself, supreme thinness is the key. But if your slices still aren’t thin enough, lay them flat on a board, cover with plastic wrap, and pound them lightly with a meat tenderizer (or wine bottle bottom) to flatten.