Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Pizza: Crust and sauce

When looking around the Kitchen Witch headquarters, better know as my kitchen, I discovered a LOT of things that I needed to use up, and quick! Let's take a look at the stellar ingredients I had to work with, shall we?

3/4 of a bag of cherry tomatoes that are just about past their prime. Skins, kinda wrinkly. Great. 1/4 c of Feta cheese in the fridge. A package of Canadian bacon in the freezer. A can of pineapple that's been living in my pantry for far too long. 5, yes 5, smoked sundried tomatoes. Wow. What an odd combination of ingredients, and they all need to be used up TODAY! This is going to take some serious Kitchen Witchcraft to make something edible out of this mess!

I started with the tomatoes. They could be roasted, concentrating their flavor and making peeling easier. What else do I have around here? Garlic, onion, herbs, all pantry staples. Sounds like pizza fixin's if you ask me! Pizza dough, I can make that. Cheese, toppings, check. Its pizza time!

This sauce is one of the better ones I've made. The husband declared it "The best pizza you've made, ever!" Looks like past their prime tomatoes made into a pizza sauce is a hit! This sauce is not saucy like most pizzas, rather its thick and paste like, more of a tomato pesto, which packed an awesome punch of tomato flavor. Crispy crust, generous toppings, yup, it was pizza success! And best of all, I used up a LOT of ingredients that could have otherwise ended up in the trash or compost pile. Brilliant!

2 1/4 c King Arthur Bread flour
1 1/4 t yeast (1/2 packet)
2 t white sugar
1 1/2 t kosher salt
1-2 T EVOO
1 + 1T c warm water

Proof yeast in small bowl with 1/4 c warm water and 1 t sugar. While yeast proofs mix flour, sugar and salt in the work bowl of your stand mixer. Once yeast is foamy add it to the flour mix along with EVOO and water. Mix with dough hook about 8 min or until you have a smooth tight ball of dough.

Coat dough ball with a drizzle of EVOO, toss around in bowl to coat ball completely and sides of bowl as well. Cover with plastic and set aside in a warm spot to rise. Allow to rise at least 30 min, but can go longer if you have time.

Spread dough out onto a pizza pan. Prick bottom of pizza with tines of a fork, this is called docking. Docking gives the steam a place to escape so the dough doesn't rise and puff there. This will give you less air bubbles on the surface of your pizza and a nice crispy crust.

3/4 bag cherry tomatoes, halved
5 smoked sun dried tomatoes
1/2 can diced canned tomatoes, rinsed & drained
2 cloves garlic, smashed (to be removed later)
1 t dry Italian seasoning, divided
1 T onion, fine diced
2-3 T EVOO
crushed red pepper flakes

Heat oil in a small skillet. I have this super awesome 6 in cast iron skillet that's perfect for this. Add garlic to cold oil, heat on med until garlic is just barely browned on 1st side. Flip garlic, add 3/4 t italian seasoning and 2 dashes pepper flakes & sautee until garlic is golden on 2nd side. Strain off herbs, pepper flakes & garlic, reserve garlic.

Pour hot oil over diced sun dried tomatoes. Add 1/4 t italian seasoning and 1 dash pepper flakes, 2 pinches salt & a few grinds pepper. Stir well & allow to cool while tomatoes roast.

Halve tomatoes & place cut side down on a silpat or parchment paper lined sheet pan (for easy clean up). Roast at 400* for 20 min or until the juices start to brown & the skins are bubbled & browned. Remove skins, run knife thru pulp to puree it essentially.

Drain canned tomatoes. Rinse well with water, this helps remove can flavor. Grab handful (about 1/2 the can), squeeze well to remove most juice, run knife thru as well. Add tomatoes to sundried tomato oil infusion, stir very well. Season w/ S&P as needed.

Toppings (Hawaiian style)
Canadian bacon
1/2 red bell pepper, fine dice
1 T onion, fine dice
1 can pineapple, in own juice, drained well
2 c mozzarella cheese grated
1/4 c Asiago cheese, grated or can use Parmesean
1/4 c Feta cheese

To assemble pizza spread sauce over crust evenly

Top with cheeses and toppings.

Bake a 400* for about 20-30 min or until crust is golden and cheese has melted & started to brown. Please allow to cool for about 5 minutes before you slice & devour this pizza. This rest time allows the cheese to firm up again so your topppings don't just fall off your slice.


Eileen said...

I've never made my own dough, but that looks easy enough! And that final picture is making me drool! :)

Tonya said...

It's so funny that I found your blog here today. I just thought - literally a couple minutes ago - Andrea should have a cooking/food blog.

Related Posts with Thumbnails