Saturday, August 27, 2011

Pizza secret

by Ana Valenzuela
Published Manila Standard Today August 17, 2011

Being a pizza junkie, I yearn for nothing but the taste of this palatable Italian dish. Sometimes at home, I would make one for myself using leftover pasta sauce and spread it on pita or even Pullman bread, top it with slices of cheddar cheese, then heat it in the oven toaster. My own rendition of pizza is enough to fill my appetite.

However, after all the pizzas that I’ve tried—from my homemade specialty to different bars , cafés and restos— there would always be certain pizza joints that I always go back to, and wish that I could eat my favorites as often as I want— if not to commit the sin of glutton, at least know what makes their pizza delectable. We all know that some secrets are meant to be shared, right?

So, imagine my excitement, when I was recently invited to tour Yellow Cab’s kitchen at Megamall. Yellow Cab has always had an open kitchen setup, where there in front of you, are the cooks and chefs, carefully rolling the crust, grating the cheese, measuring the onions and mushrooms, and spreading other toppings. But, it still makes you wonder what makes it Yellow Cab’s pizza a favorite of many Filipinos.

Genelyn Bermudo, marketing officer of Yellow Cab Pizza Co. answers this question during the tour. “Pizza is known for its tomato and cheese, these are the soul of the pizza,” she says. “So we depend on all natural, all fresh ingredients. This is what makes our pizza tastier. Yellow Cab uses fresh garlic, fresh mushroom, fresh vegetables as well as natural and fresh cheese.”

So, from Four Season’s to New York’s Finest, Yellow Cab works only with fresh ingredients that are delivered daily. With Yellow Cab’s innovative menu, like the Barbeque Chicken Pizza and Roasted Garlic and Shrimp, these do not use tomato as base, like the usual pizzas they do however have cheese. Maybe apart from garden fresh vegetables, the secret is in the cheese.

“We depend on the quality of the cheese—our cheeses are supposed to be fresh also,” Bermudo affirms. That certain cheese which Yellow Cab has been filling our appetites with is no less than Fonterra’s parmesan and mozzarella cheeses. Since Yellow Cab started and opened its first branch in Makati Avenue on April 2001, Fonterra has been supplying them with the cheeses and creams (used for pasta).

“It’s perfect to partner with Yellow Cab because they stress on the freshest ingredients,” says Pauline Lagdameo, Fonterra Brands Philippines chief advisory chef says. Fonterra locally distributes brands such as the Anchor butter, Anlene and Anmum.

Fonterra assures pizza lovers like me of the quality of the cheeses that they provide Yellow Cab. The cheese goes through a process of aging and adding flavor. The cheese are made from fresh New Zealand’s cow milk using natural cheese resulting in excellent stretch for mozzarella and rich, strong flavors for Parmesan. “The distinct characteristic of mozzarella is that it is stringy. They knead the curd—like kneading dough, which is where you get that distinct is stringy characteristics. The other one is parmesan cheese. Parmesan would not go through that kneading process and it is harder, stronger in flavor because it is preserved for a longer period of time,” explains Lagdameo.

Now that I know what makes Yellow Cab’s pizza, I would definitely try this at home. Hmm, maybe. But, for now I’ll just a call the Yellow Cab.

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