Friday, February 1, 2008

Game night with Arugula and Sun-dried Tomato Pizza!

For football fans or not... There is nothing like homemade pizza to please everyone! Set up a table for personal pizzas with pre-baked pizza crust, different toppings, olive oil, herbs and a no-cook tomato sauce. The do-it-yourself pizzas will sure please everyone and the cook can score a touchdown too, fixing the pizza crusts in advance!

My contribution to the Game Night event that Mansi at Fun and Food is promoting.

Pizza dough
1 package active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (about 105 °F/40°C)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 to 3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons olive oil

1) In a mixing bowl or food processor: dissolve yeast in water and add sugar. Let stand for 5 minutes, then add the flour, salt, and oil and beat or process until smooth.

2) Knead: on a floured flat surface for about 5 minutes, until smooth.
(This step can be skipped if using a food processor).

3) Cover and let rise: in a warm place until doubled. It should be ready in 30 to 60 minutes. (Make the pizza sauce below while the dough is rising.)

4) Roll out: break the dough in half, or in the amount of personal pizzas you want to make. Roll out using a rolling pin to flatten it out to about 1/4" (0.5 cm) thick. Run the pin over the dough once or twice, flip over and roll it again to make it even (use a plate to cut out a round shape). Transfer dough to a lightly greased cookie sheet, prick several times with a fork.

5) Pre-bake: at 425 °F/220°C for 6-8 minutes.

6) Add toppings: Cover with your favorite sauce and toppings and bake in preheated oven until golden brown, about 20 minutes.

My toppings suggestion: fresh tomato sauce, mozzarela or goat's cheese, oregano - cook a few minutes in the oven. Remove from oven, place arugula and sun-dried tomatoes on top - these last two ingredients do not need to be cooked; sprinkle coarse salt and pepper over the pizza. Enjoy!

For skillet pizza:
Instead of baking, heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat, cook each round 2 minutes per side or until lightly browned. Add toppings, cover with a lid and cook for another 2 to 4 minutes.

No-cook fresh tomato sauce
3 ripe tomatoes, cut in half
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil (evoo)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
oregano, fresh basil leaves, black pepper and garlic powder to taste

1) Grate tomatoes: use a coarse vegetable grater over a bowl, grating as close to the skin as possible (flesh down, do not grate skin, discard it).

2) Mix together grated tomatoes, oregano, basil, salt, sugar, pepper and garlic powder.

This recipe makes a great fresh tomato sauce for any pasta.


Mansi Desai said...

You made it!!! thanks so much Cris, for participating, and for this wonderful pizza!!:)

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for posting this recipe. I tried to make this before, but it didn't turn out like I had in Brazil... Will try this one and let you know how it was.

Thanks so much.