Wednesday, February 16, 2011
My brain is pretty full with all this learning (cramming) stuff and I’m not feeling particularly witty at the moment. So instead humor I give you pizza. Bacony potato pizza with roasted garlic paste for sauce.
I feel it’s a worthwhile tradeoff. At least until my brain cells stop crying out for mercy. I’m beginning to understand why some uber professionals lack a sense of humor. Probably born funny, they lost their ability to produce and comprehend humor somewhere along the route to know-it-all-dom.
Bacon Potato Pizza with Olives and Roasted Garlic Sauce
This pizza takes a bit more preparation than the usual throw together type, but it’s not difficult to do. Just be sure you have time to roast garlic and make pizza dough. If planning ahead, try to knock out those two items the day before.
1 (12 to 14 inch) pizza dough, recipe below
Roasted garlic paste, recipe far below
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella
1 to 2 small Yukon Gold potatoes (enough to cover a pizza)
6 slices thick cut bacon, cooked and cut into bite size pieces
1/3 cup onion slivers
1/4 cup good quality pitted olives, cut into quarters
1 cup shredded Fontina cheese
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
Coarse cornmeal (polenta) for pizza pan
1. Heat up the grill to hot and close the lid.
2. Meanwhile, thinly slice potatoes and place in a microwave safe bowl. Cover potato slices with water and cook on high until tender. About 3 to 5 minutes. Rinse in cold water and set aside.
3. Brush a 12-14 inch pizza pan very lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with cornmeal. Stretch and roll the dough and place on the pan. Brush top of dough lightly with olive oil.
4. Spoon garlic paste around dough (don't be shy with it) and sprinkle top with mozzarella. Top with potato slices, bacon, onion, olives and then Fontina. Sprinkle with rosemary, salt and pepper. Drizzle top with a small amount of olive oil.
5. Set pizza pan on the grill and close the lid. Turn grill to medium high and cook for 5 to 8 minutes or until done. Turn to medium heat for a thicker crust pizza and cook longer. Transfer onto a cookie sheet with tongs.
Helpful Hint: If the top of your pizza ever cooks faster than the bottom crust you can shimmy the pizza directly onto the grill and char until done to your liking.
Makes enough dough for two medium to large pizzas.
1 cup warm (110 degrees F) water
1 (1/4-ounce) envelope (or 2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
1 teaspoon honey
1 cup bread flour
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1. In a stand mixer bowl add the water, yeast, and honey and let sit for 5 minutes until foamy. Add the flours, olive oil, and salt and mix with the dough hook until well kneaded. Remove the dough and knead by hand for another few minutes.
2. Oil a large bowl. Remove the dough from the stand mixer and knead on a clean surface for two more minutes. Place the dough in the oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes until doubled in volume.
Roasted Garlic Paste
3 heads of garlic (Or more, more, more!)
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Peel away the loose outer layers of the garlic bulb skin. Trim off 1/4 to a 1/2 inch of the top of cloves, exposing the individual cloves of garlic.
3. Place the garlic heads in a baking or muffin pan. Drizzle a couple teaspoons of olive oil over each head, rubbing in the oil until garlic is coated well. Cover with aluminum foil. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the cloves feel soft when pressed.
4. Set garlic aside until cool enough you can touch it without screaming in pain. Press the garlic out of their skins into a small food processor bowl or a bowl.
5. Puree or mash garlic with a small amount of oil and a sprinkle of salt. Hide the bread and try not to eat right away, unless you’ve made extra of course.
Recipes and photograph by Laura Flowers.