February 28, 2013
Zach and I LOVE pizza. Unfortunately, we live in an area that isn’t really known for making a really good pie. Sure we have found a couple of pretty good artisan pizza shops, but nothing like that of the East coast. I don’t think there will be anyone that will measure up to the pizza from back East. We often resort to making our own, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I understand why many people tend to go the pre-made or frozen pizza route. It seems simple, but if only these people knew how easy it was to make your own! Not only is it super easy, but it’s super affordable too. I feel that these days pizza shops are out of control with their pricing. You could literally make your own for $1 per 12inch pie. The secret behind great pizza is the dough, and today we decided to stuff ours!
I feel like I’ve been on a “diverse” food mood lately. Pizza is another very diverse food. The sky is really the limit on what you can create. This is what makes them so fun! Breakfast pizzas are becoming especially popular these days. People are even going with vegan, gluten-free options for pizza and creating a cauliflower crust. I didn’t go this route today, but I’m thinking I may in the near future. A cauliflower crust sounds crazy enough that it may just work!
I love stuffed pizza crust. I have to admit I once was a Pizza Hut junky. Shh…Please don’t tell anyone. Obviously a thicker crust would have have made this pizza 8 feet tall once I stuffed it. Our very own pizza dough recipe worked just fine. Although not a super thin crust, we stretched it just enough so it would work the way wanted it to. We topped it with a delicious red pepper sauce infused with roasted garlic and thyme. Then we added some micro greens, provolone, tomatoes and sausage to bring it all together. If you are going the vegetarian route. The sausage can easily be omitted. It tastes just as great without as it does with.
* Please Note * The prep time in this recipe allows time for the dough to rise which is why I mentioned that it will take about 4 hours. Don’t be scared. You will not be kneading pizza dough for 4 hours straight. =)
What goes better than pizza and beer? Well not a whole lot actually. You really can’t have one without the other. At least I think so. Pale ales go great with pizza, so we most definitely had to go this route. Boulder Beer makes a good one in their Hoopla Pale Ale. Light and crisp and perfect with pizza…especially our pizza =).
We are inviting you to date night this weekend straight from our kitchen. Zach is making quail…or cornish hens…or whatever he happens to find. This should be fun and intriguing all at the same time! Can’t wait!
- 1⅛ teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1½ teaspoons white granulated sugar
- 1¼ cup warm water
- 1½ teaspoon olive oil + extra
- 3 cups bread flour + more if needed
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 – 3 red bell peppers, roughly chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, roasted then roughly chopped
- salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
- 2 – 3 tablespoons chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- 8 slices deli-style provolone
- 2 cups grated sharp provolone
- ½ lb cooked italian sausage, sliced
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes (yellow), sliced in half
- 4 ounces micro greens
- Dissolve the yeast, sugar and salt in the water. Let sit for 10-15 minutes. Transfer to the bowl of you stand mixer with dough hook attached. Gradually add in flour until the dough forms a ball and begins to pull away from the sides. Lightly dust a cutting board, and transfer the dough to it. Knead for 5-7 minutes adding flour as necessary. Dough should be tacky but not overly sticky. Form into a ball and fold under itself so the top of the ball is tight. In another bowl drizzle olive oil and swirl around so the bowl is evenly coated. Transfer the dough to the greased bowl. Cover and transfer to refrigerator for at least 4 hours or until dough has doubled in size. Once risen, transfer the dough to a floured surface and cut 6 even pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and then cover with a tea towel to let rest for about 30 minutes.
- While the dough is resting, prepare your red pepper sauce. In a saute pan, heat about 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the red pepper and cook until tender. Add the chopped roasted garlic and cook for 2 minutes more. To a blender, add your peppers and garlic, thyme, chicken stock, tomato paste and a dash of salt and pepper. Blend until smooth. Transfer your sauce back to your pan and stir in the heavy cream. Cook until heated through then set aside.
- Preheat your oven to 450 degrees and situate an oven rack between the middle and the very bottom notches of the oven. Place your pizza stone into the oven while it’s heating up. Now you will begin shaping your dough balls into 5 inch circles (about ¼ inch thick). Roll out if necessary. On one of your circles, lay two slices of provolone cheese then top with another of your circles. Pinch the edges together with your fingers. You will have three pizzettes in the end.
- Top your pizzettes with a layer of sauce, then cheese, sausage, tomatoes, and a last sprinkle of cheese. Using a pizza peel, slide your pizzettes onto your pizza stone, making sure not to overcrowd (we did 2 at a time). Bake for about 8-10 minutes or until the cheese is beginning to brown slightly. Remove from oven and top with micro greens.