From harvest to table ~ what's cooking now?

This blog shows where all those garden goodies I grow end up. I call this little eating area next to the stove my "chef's table" because at all the best restaurants it's a privilege to be invited to dine in the kitchen where the chef reigns supreme. So here I am "reigning" and you are all invited. :-D

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Scratch pizza

I've gotten into the habit of making a loaf of the no-knead Ciabatta bread once a week.  Last Sunday I cut off a hunk of the risen dough, bagged it up and tossed it into the 'fridge.  I planned on making some Focaccia bread on Monday.

But things happened and the dough languished Monday and Tuesday and Wednesday.  Eeek.  I didn't want to lose it, so late Wednesday I decided for some odd reason to make a pizza.  I've never made homemade pizza.  Closest I've ever come was using some frozen white bread dough pulled into a round and then topped with pulled pork and some BBQ sauce.  That was. not. pizza!

The no-knead dough is usually a sticky mess, but cool from the fridge it behaved itself as I stretchd it out into a thin-ish round.  Then I piled on what was on hand: some jarred spaghetti sauce, red onions, hot pickled pepper rings, dried mushrooms and some turkey pepperoni.  I didn't have any mozzarella, so settled for shredding some pepper jack.

Sprinkled liberally with Italian seasonings, hot pepper flakes, and extra oregano I then spritzed the whole thing with EVOO (to help the turkey pepperoni crisp up since it's so lean).

Into the 500+ degree oven onto the bottom rack for 5 minutes, then rotated and placed on the top rack for another 7 minutes.


I'm sure the dough would have been better on Monday, and the crust would have been a little more springy and tender too, had I not stretched it out so thin.  But, there was no denying it, this was REAL PIZZA.  *munch* Yup.  *munch*  Next time, though, I'll use mozzarella.   Otherwise, *chew*  I'm writing this up as a total success for a first ever home made from scratch pizza.  No more take out.  I'll be making my own from now on.

(Goodbye, Italo's & Hungry Howies.  You're gonna miss me... )

============ Feb 20 kitchen update ============

Pizza in toaster oven

I used the bread dough that had been in the 'fridge for a couple of days to make a single serving size pizza.  I also wanted to see if I could make the pizza in the little toaster oven since I had such good success baking a loaf of the Ciabatta bread in there the other day.

I gathered up the usual suspects.  I had a more trouble shaping the crust this time,  No matter how much I pulled and stretched, it sprang back like a rubber band.  So the final crust was thicker than I wanted.  Oh well.

I set the toaster to 'toast' (which turns on both the top and bottom elements and the temp all the way up... 450F (which probably made it around 500F in there).  I baked the pizza on the bottom rack for the first 8 minutes, then finished it off on the tap rack for another 5.  *BING*

Everything had sizzled up nicely and as you can see by the last pic, the bottom of the crust got a nice toast to it - nothing soggy here.   The crust itself was a little drier than the large pizza, but I think that was because I had futzed it too long trying to stretch it out.  Still, it was DELISH! :-D

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  1. Good for you! I usually just make my own sauce but last time used some jarred spaghetti sauce. All I added was extra basil. Tasted great. I am not a fan of the low fat pepperoni....I accidentally bought the turkey last time. I won't do it again! Your pizza looks delish!

    I make a two-crust recipe using the food processor. Cook one and freeze one.

    1. I see your other 'pizza comment' didn't actually make it TO the pizza post. LOL Sorry that Blogger is giving you such grief lately. How long can I freeze the dough? Should I let it thaw out on the counter or in the 'fridge? I, personally, don't eat beef so turkey pepperoni with it's lighter taste and less fat has come to be my preference. I bought some moz today. Next pizza should be even better...!

    2. I don't thaw before cooking. I use it just like the store-bought frozen pizzas.

      I usually just make up the pizza when I do the other one (two pizza dough recipe)put in freezer, let freeze completely then wrap well with foil,label and put back in the freezer.

      I have also rolled out the crust, pre-freeze, then wrap and put in freezer.

    3. OIC - you make a complete pizza or a rolled out crust. I just froze a lump of dough. This should be interesting when I thaw it out to build a new pizza.