Tag Archives: mozzarella

Cherries, Take Two

Take some cherry tomatoes

Tomates_cerises_Luc_Viatour(1)

Add some fresh mozzarella  –ciliegini – little cherry size

mozzerella, fresh

 

With basil and  a little olive oil …a lovely summer salad. Serve with Scali bread to mop up the juices..

scali bread

If you can’t find Scali bread, here’s a link on how to make some : http://blog.kingarthurflour.com/2008/03/26/for-the-love-of-scali-bread/

The next night…

Take what’s left of the tomato and cheese, which has been marinating in balsamic vinegar all night…..drool….And add to hot pasta

Practically instant, low cook supper.

 

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Beer Pizza Pronto

Pizza and Beer are a pretty good combination.

Grolsch Beer  - Dutch beer from a brewery founded in 1615 - a little history in a little bottle

Grolsch Beer – Dutch beer from a brewery founded in 1615 – a little bottle of history.

Pizza without sauce...sometimes known as white pizza or pizza bianca

Pizza without sauce…sometimes known as white pizza or pizza bianc0

So beer IN the pizza….pure genius!

This is a dough that can be made in a hurry, mostly with pantry/fridge ingredients, so also easy to do on the spur of the moment.

BEER PIZZA PRONTO

3 cups AP flour, plus more for the board
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 12 oz beer, bottle or can, light or dark, whatever your purse and palate allow in the house
Olive oil
3 cups grated mozzarella cheese (not the fresh; the supermarket kind. Even the pre-grated packaged stuff would work here; depending on your topping, the pre-grated ‘cheddar’ stuff could also be good – let your taste buds decide)
Assorted toppings – you know what you like – or what you have…
1. Pre heat oven to 450°
2. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets with olive oil; put aside.
3. Spread flour on your work surface – give yourself enough swing room if you’re using a rolling pin.
4. Open the beer (If it’s been a rough day, open 2 – one for the pizza and one for the cook. Put the Cook beer out of swing range of the pizza dough prep – if you spill it, angels will weep. They just don’t like messy kitchens)
5. In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, baking powder. I use a whisk.
6. Pour in the beer, mix well. This will form a sticky lump.
7. Dump it out on the floured work surface. Roll it in the flour until it’s not so sticky and knead it a time or two to form a ball. A Bench knife is your friend. Divide to make 2 balls.
8. Place one ball on each greased baking sheet and pat, pull and otherwise coax with your impeccably clean hands the dough into a 11-12” circle (oil your hands if the dough gets sticky ) OR
9. Roll each ball to an 11-12” circle and place on the greased baking sheet.
10. Sprinkle 1 ½ cups of the grated cheese on top of each, and top with topping – remember, this is quick and easy, so don’t over load. Make a salad or an antipasto to serve WITH the pizza with all the cool stuff you’ve found kicking around your fridge and pantry instead of piling it all on this pizza. This is a quick dough, not a sturdy one. Cheese, one topping. IF you need some tomato sauce, very little, merest, tiniest  smidge – or use the sauce to dip……you are eating outside the box, after all!
11. Bake 12-15 minutes until golden brown top and bottom.

Adapted from Jeanne Lemlin. Simple Vegetarian Pleasures. Quill. 1998. p. 137.

Simple Veg Pleasures

Jeanne Lemlin

Jeanne Lemlin

 

 

 

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Getting a round to it

Corners are cool….

Huey Lewis and the News Hip to Be Square

Huey Lewis and the News Hip to Be Square

but eventually even I have to get a round to the pizza.

It’s not that I haven’t made round pizzas. Try finding a not-round pizza pan, for one thing.

But more recently, Rachael Ray – yes, Rachael Ray  – showed me a pizza that was both round and involved cast iron.

Rachael Ray

Rachael Ray

It was the September issue…..which I didn’t really have time to read until the first week in December.

Rachael Ray EveryDay Magazine September 2013

EveryDay with Rachael Ray Magazine September 2013

So, make some  dough…..you remember.

Rache would have you buy it, but now that you know how easy dough is, and that you can hold on to it in the fridge until you need it so you can make it ahead and have it on hand, why would you buy it?

The other secret  to Cast Iron Pizza is that the seasoning in the dough – really necessary. Even if you don’t use a premix, use some basil, use some oregano get some flavor in it.

You will also need a 8 inch cast iron frying pan. Or skillet. And a lid for said pan. I just has to be a lid that will cover the pan, it doesn’t have be be that pan’s lid.

A close  up of the pizza in the magazine

A close up of the pizza in the magazine – that’s arugula on top; arugula is also known as rocket.

Many cast iron pans have the size on the back – look for an 8. Another clue – the paper for the magazine is approximately 81/2 x 11, which means the picture in magazine in the magazine is close to life size. These are single serve pizzas. Which works out rather well for a single girl.

Cast Iron Pizza

1 pound of dough, divided into 4 –  4 oz. balls. Knead some seasoning in if you bought it – even a little Romano cheese will perk it up. Big Pan Pizza makes about 2 1/2 pounds of dough FYI.

(flour, to keep the dough from sticking)

Olive oil

tomato sauce, heated (I use Pastene kitchen ready tomatoes  – I like the tomato flavor )

Fresh or dried herbs for seasoning

cheese – mozzarella ( I used some lovely mozzarella from Wolf Farm, grated, but fresh, cut into a small dice would work well here.A little Parm or Romano is always good for the center )

Other toppings – arugula or peperoni or …..

  1. Heat the pan  – the 8 inch cast iron pan – over medium heat for 10 minutes. Make sure that the lid is nearby.
  2. Flatten one 4 oz ball of dough and stretch it into an 8″ round ( I just did this in my hands and didn’t roll it out at all).
  3. Put 1 tsp of olive oil in the hot pan and swirl it to completely cover the bottom. Put the dough circle in the pan
  4. Cook for 1 1/2 minutes (that’s 90 seconds) You’re just setting the bottom.
  5. Flip the dough, cover the pan and cook for 3 minutes, until the bottom is brown. (My first bottom got a little black….so I turned it down for the next three)
  6. Turn the dough again. Top with heated sauce (a 1/4 of a cup – I used my big spoon). Sprinkle on cheese. Other toppings? Now’s the time to add.
  7. Cover for another minute (or two) until the cheese is melted.
  8. Move it out of the pan and onto a cutting board. Wipe out the pan.
  9. Repeat until done.
  10. Mangia!
Pastene Kitchen ready tomatoes

Pastene Kitchen Ready Tomatoes

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