Yes, it’s possible to have bad pizza. Like, really bad pizza. I’m talking 3 in the morning, cold cheese on ketchup pizza that may or may not come with a free soda and fries if you order two slices for 99 cents. This is what we call a food tragedy. But it should not represent the greater, tastier food group that IS pizza!
The good news is, it’s really hard to make bad pizza in your own home, since you’re controlling exactly what goes on! Once you have the basic dough down, you are essentially good to go. I am normally very much a red sauce kinda girl when it comes to my pizza, but I had some leftover arugula pesto (that stuff freezes great!) so I used that, some fresh mozz, garlic, shallots, and broccoli to make this a green pizza that will certainly NOT scream diet material. Firstly, because I don’t think cheese on bread counts as diet material anyway. Secondly, because this pizza is way too darn tasty to scream anything other than “decadence”.
- 1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
- 1 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
- 2 cups bread flour
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons white sugar
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- corn meal, to cover the baking sheet or pizza stone
- ½ to ¾ cup olive oil
- 1 shallot, minced
- 3 cloves garlic, sliced lengthwise into thin slices
- ½ tsp fresh thyme, chopped
- 1 cup shredded fresh mozzarella (or 3-4 big slices)
- ½ to 1 cup arugula pesto
- 1 head broccoli, cut into small florets
- Balsamic vinegar, for drizzling
- In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.
- In a large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, olive oil, salt, white sugar, garlic powder, oregano and the yeast mixture; stir well to combine. Beat well until a stiff dough has formed. Cover and rise until doubled in volume, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350° F.
- In a small pan, heat the oil over medium-low heat. Add the garlic, thyme and shallots. The idea here isn’t necessarily to fry the aromatics, but to sort of poach them. Cook until the shallots are translucent and garlic is just starting to get crispy. Your house will smell very garlicky and delicious at this point.
- Turn out the pizza dough onto a baking sheet or pizza stone that has been dusted with cornmeal. You should also rub your hands with some corn meal to prevent the dough from sticking to you. Spread the dough out to the shape you want, then layer on your toppings. I started out with arugula pesto, then added a layer of mozzarella, the broccoli, and finished it off by pouring my oil and poached aromatics on top.
- Bake for 25 minutes. Slice, drizzle with balsamic vinegar if desired, and serve!