Tuesday, November 2, 2010
I took an initiative and made a large batch of pizza dough. I'm going to be having myself some homemade pizzas for the next few weeks. W00T!! It was nice getting my hands dirty once again mixing up dough. Kneading it to the right consistency. Is it weird to say that I was way too excited to see the dough double in size. Goes to show how much I miss being in the kitchen.
For the first pizza, I fire-roasted a yellow bell pepper on my stove top to remove the skin and broiled the eggplants in the broiler at the same time. Did a little scoopage to separate the skin from the eggplant after.
I rolled out one of the dough into a super thin crust. Once baked it will be nice and crisp. I tend to prefer thin crust now-a-days, but I still like those bready ones, too. The sauce isn't anything special. It's just the canned version. I used Hunt's 4-cheese pasta sauce, which is pretty tasty. The cheese is shredded mozzarella. What you have here is a veggie-licious dish. Have it with a beer or a can of pop. Perfect for those movie and pizza nights. :)
Serves 2-3 depending on pizza size.
4 C All Purpose Flour plus (extra for dusting or you may use cornmeal)
2 c warm water (110 to 120˚F)
1 packet or 2 tsp dry active yeast
2 tsp salt
5 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil (plus extra for the bowl and basting)
1 tsp sugar
Combine the water, yeast and sugar together. Let is sit for roughly 5 min..
In a large bowl combine the flour, salt and oil. Blend well. Add in the yeast mixture and mix all together until it forms into a dough ball.
On a well-floured surface. Knead the dough for a couple of minutes until almost elastic in feel. Place the dough into another bowl lubed with olive oil. Cover with platic wrap and a towel and keep away from light until the dough rises and doubles in size. Roughly 1-2 hours.
When the dough doubles, lightly punch down the dough to release the gases inside.
Layout the dough on a well-floured surface and divide into 4-6 balls. Wrap unused dough in plastic wrap and keep in the freezer until ready to use.
Fire-Roasted Bell Pepper and Broiled Eggplant Pizza
1 pizza dough (homemade or store dough)
1 yellow bell pepper
2 japanese eggplants
2 c shredded mozzarella
1/2 c marinara, pasta sauce or your choice of pizza sauce
extra virgin olive oil
Preheat your broiler. Slice the eggplant in half and baste is with some olive oil. Place on a baking pan and broil for 15-20 minutes. Flip half-way through. Once slightly charred on both sides remove from broiler and let cool before handling. Scoop out the meat and discard the skins. Give it a rough chop and set aside.
Turn on one flame of your stove to medium-high. Place the bell pepper directly on the flame. You want to char the skin until they have blackened. Use a pair of tongs to turn the bell pepper. Once most or all the skin has been charred, let it cool for a couple minutes before handling. Using the back of a knife or a straight edge, scrap off the skin. Then remove the seeds and give the bell pepper and rough chop. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 450˚F.
In a lightly dusted surface, roll out the dough until 1/8-inch thick. Place the dough on an ungreased baking sheet. Take a clean fork and perforate the dough all around, then evenly spread the marinara sauce. Take 1 cup of the cheese and sprinkle it over the sauce. Followed by the eggplant, then the bell pepper, then the rest of the cheese.
Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil over the entire pizza and bake for 10-15 minutes. Or until the crust looks lightly brown and crisp.