"Toiyabe" Pizza

Posted by francis keyser Monday, February 8, 2010
Taste Level: VGR
Cost: $20 and under
Serves: 4
Prep Time: 40-45 min.
Cook Time: 25-30 min.
Difficulty: 2

I love it when Zo and I both have an idea of flavors we want to have separately but when thrown together match up almost as perfect as we do! Here is an example: Zo had been wanting to make a potato and goat cheese pizza for a few days. When she first told me about I was not to excited. I mean potatoes and goat cheese on a pizza? Then she told me how she had one a few years back and really liked it. We ended up having crab at my parents and on the drive home I said "Wouldn't onions be good on it?" Zo said, "Maybe." Then the next day I said, "What about pears?" I am not to keen on the idea of fruit on pizza (I hate pineapple on 98 percent of pizzas) and she said, "That could be good." Then I grabbed some marinated with herbs mozzarella while we were grabbing fresh mozzarella for the pizza and Zo said, "This could be good on it!" Zo reply more excitedly to this idea than any of the others with a, "OH Yes that will be really good!" Then right before we went to cooking she ran to the store and got some fresh rosemary and Pancetta to go in the sauce and over the pizza. Our run on recipe idea came out of the oven smelling and tasting amazing! If you are not afraid of trying something a little different (and you shouldn't be) then crank up those ovens and roll out some dough!

(For instructions on how to make your own sourdough pizza skin check posting dated 7/7/09.)


Ingredients:
Toppings
1/2 lb fingerling potatoes (preparation instructions below)
1/2 red pear (sliced)
4 pieces pancetta
1 stalk rosemary (rosemary removed from stem)
2 oz goat cheese
4-5 oz fresh mozzarella (thinly sliced)
2 oz herb marinated mozzarella twist (thinly sliced)
fresh crack pepper

Sauce
4 pieces pancetta
1/3 of a large red onion (sliced then halved)
4 cloves garlic (minced)
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
1/4 tsp red Hawaiian sea salt
fresh crack pepper (to taste)
1/8 tsp essence

Crust
1 portion of sourdough pizza dough check posting for 7/7/09 or pre-made crust

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Tossing dough
What works best for me is I strongly throw the ball of dough down on a solid flat surface covered with a piece of wax paper until it is large and flat enough for me to easily balance on top of both of my fists. Then I make an X with my arms keeping my fists close together (backhand to back hand, the dough atop of them both) and I fling the dough upwards with my fingers as I simultaneously bring my arms quickly parallel (palm to palm) about 3-4 inches apart. As the dough falls I remake my fists and catch the dough atop them again in the X position and repeat until the dough has formed a 12-14 inch crust.

(Alternately you can lay dough on a solid flat surface covered with wax paper and squish flat with hands. Roll into a ball and slam the dough down onto your solid flat surface covered with a piece of wax paper. Using your fist mush the dough down repeatedly as if you were punching it softly but firmly (this helps get any air bubbles out of it.) Now using your finger tips press and stretch dough until you have formed a 12-14 inch circular pizza skin (you can also make an easier rectangle skin.)

Sauce
Add 4 pieces of pancetta to a small sauce pan and crisp over medium heat (5-7 minutes.) Remove the pancetta from the pan and then add the red onion to the grease and cook for 5-7 minutes or until translucent. Now add the garlic and cook for 3-4 minutes or until becoming fragrant. Crumble the pancetta back into the pan and then add tomatoes, essence, salt and crack pepper. Let simmer for 10-15 minutes or until thickened.

Potatoes
Add potatoes to a medium sauce pan and cover with hot water. Place on stove over high heat and bring to boil. Boil for 2-3 minutes and then remove from heat and strain. Once cool enough to work with slice into 1/2 inch slices.


Pizza
Sprinkle corn meal onto a baking sheet and lay skin on to it. Spread sauce evenly up to about an inch and a half away from the edge of the crust (I find using a pastry spatula works great for spreading tomato sauce.) Take the 4 slices of pancetta you did not cook and unroll them into strips. Lay these strips along the outside of the crust. Mix together the mozzarella cheeses and spread 1/2 of the mozzarella slices over the sauce. Finally lay the potato slices over the cheese and sauce.

Place pizza on baking sheet lightly coated with corn meal. Arrange your oven racks to where they are on the upper and lower thirds of the oven. If you are using a baking stone as we do place it directly onto the floor of a preheated oven for 45 minutes (but you will be less likely to ruin your pizza stone if you place it on a rack at its lowest position.) Place baking sheet with pizza on the lower oven rack and bake for 7-10 minutes. After 10 minutes remove the pizza and baking sheet from the oven and add the remaining ingredients in this order; mozzarella, pear slices, goat cheese, rosemary and then fresh crack pepper.

Place the pizza and baking sheet onto the upper rack and bake 7-10 minutes (if cooking a second pizza you can put it on the lower rack now on a separate baking sheet.) Slide Pizza off of baking sheet directly onto baking stone and cook for 3-8 minutes or until crisp and bottom is browning (if you were cooking a second pizza you would move it to the top rack on its baking sheet once you slide the first pizza onto the baking stone and of course you would move it to the baking stone once you have remove the first pizza and cooked the second one 7-10 minutes on the upper rack.)

Slide pizza onto a cutting board or baking sheet and use a pizza slicer to cut into 8-10 slices and serve hot with your favorite pizza sides, seasonings and sauces!

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