Sunday, February 05, 2012

The Husband's Recipes: Pizza, Italian Style


This pizza is one of the reasons we've become extremely fussy and particular about eating out. The husband has perfected the recipe over time into something that reminds us of Italy and its little hole-in-the-wall pizza places in small towns and villages where everyone is local (and we stuck out like sore thumbs, but who cares?). There's no gooey melty cheese (and definitely no side of wings) or extra sauce. As a matter of fact, there rarely is a sauce and the pizza is often served in room temperature. Tomatoes are sometimes cut fresh and used to top the already baked pizza (I had one with a fresh capreze salad. It was glorious). So here it is, written and photographed by The Blond:

The Ultimate Vegetarian Pizza: Whole wheat, Feta and Zucchini Pizza
I always loved Pizza. What’s not to like in dough, tomato sauce and cheese? Chicago style deep dish was my favorite growing up. That was until I got to Italy and saw the original: a slightly charred thin crust topped with a vegetable and some olive oil. That was, surprisingly all. Minimalistic? Yes. Heavenly? Oh, yes.
As vegetarians we played with different recipes and combinations until we got to this one which became a staple. The vegetable/s on top can change based on what‘s available,  but zucchini is our favorite with eggplant being the runner up.

For the dough:
1. Mix 1 packet of dry yeast in 1¼ cups warm water + a teaspoon of sugar or honey mixed in. Let stand for 5 minutes. Add ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil.
2. In a stand mixer, mix 1.5 cups whole wheat flour, 1.5 cups regular flour, a bit of salt, pepper and dried basil to taste.
3. Pour in the yeast mixture an let it come together. Change to the kneading hook and let it knead for 3-4 minutes – until the dough starts to climb up the hook. (Or just mix it all and knead by hand for 5 minutes).
4. Let rest in a cat-safe warm area in an oiled and covered bowl for 2 hours or so until the dough doubles in volume.

Heat the oven to 460 F.

Split the dough into 2 even parts (if you have the will power not to eat both pizzas in one seating; it will keep for 2 days ziplocked in the fridge).

Assembling the pizza:
1. Roll the dough into the shape of your choice, about 1/6th inch thick (it may require a little extra flour so it does not stick to the surface) and place in a pizza pan or on a pizza stone.
2. Brush the dough with olive oil and sprinkle with herbs such as thyme, marjoram etc. Sprinkle with dried chilies to taste.


3. Dice 125g of good quality feta cheese and scatter evenly on the dough.


4. Slice 2-3 mid size zucchinis into 1/8th inch slices, mix with a little olive oil and arrange on top on the feta cheese.
5. Arrange the zucchini slices with some more herbs and grate a little Parmesan cheese on top.


6. Place in the oven for 15-25 minutes depending on your oven until the dough is dark brown and the zucchini are golden. Let rest for 10 minutes and try not to eat too fast.



Enjoy!

7 comments:

  1. zucchini, feta and bread, some of my favorite things! yummy!

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is wonderful! Right now our garden is producing too many zucchini, and I have been searching websites featuring "93 ways to use zucchini".

    Mr. Vinery was amused when I told him about this, and wanted me to send you his latest photo of a zucchini as big as a magnum wine bottle and still growing...but I'll spare you that.

    Can't wait to try this recipe, as the Blond's roasted cauliflower is in regular rotation here.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Looks wonderful! I love the combination of feta and zucchini. Will definitely try it on pizza the next time I make it.
    You "cat-free" comment made me laugh. The last time our visiting cat was over, I made some flatbreads. They were rising covered by some plastic wrap and a towel on the table. When I was ready to load them in the oven, I discovered that they were completely covered with cat foot prints!

    P.S. Gaia, you could easily pass for an Italian! :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Oh my...yum! I adore courgette and feta cheese, together apart and anywhichway. ( Speaking of feta, SmittenKitchen's Feta Salsa is all kinds of delicious) And pizza...nom.. Thanks for this! We already love the roasted cauliflower. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  5. What a Swell Monday BOON!! How do I love The Non-Blonde let me count the wayz :)

    ReplyDelete

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