White Pizza

6 07 2008

It’s been a long time since I posted about pizza. In fact, it’s been almost a year since I last took a picture of one of my pizzas. That’s because this is called Mark Ruins Dinner, and I’ve found a great recipe and I’ve been using it exclusively with equally great results. But Lately I’ve been trying to come up with variations from our usual fare so I decided on white pizza.

I don’t know a whole lot about white pizza. For instance, what to use as a sauce? Do I just use olive oil? What kind of toppings would go with it? I don’t know. So I did some research on the food network and I found this recipe by Emeril, which uses a roasted garlic sauce. Sounds good, now what?

I started with my favorite pizza dough: Whole wheat and rosemary pizza dough from Pinch My Salt. I’ve tweaked it a little and I hope Nicole isn’t too offended. First, I’ve been using bread flour instead of all purpose flour because Karen told me to, and it works out really well. Also, when adding this flour the recipe calls for three cups, and I use three and a half cups. I was having trouble with the crust being soggy when the cheese and toppings were done, and this did the trick. I’ve also been using the stand mixer to do the kneading for me because I always do it wrong by hand.

The roasted garlic sauce was actually pretty easy to do, but in Emeril’s recipe it’s hard to follow because he mentions the last step first. I will list it here in its correct order.

Roasted Garlic:
2 heads garlic
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a small baking dish with aluminum foil.

Cut the top quarter from each head of garlic and place, cut side up, on the prepared dish. Drizzle with oil and season lightly with salt and pepper. Turn the garlic cut side down, and roast until the cloves are soft and golden brown, about 1 hour. Remove from the oven and let sit until cool enough to handle.

Over a small bowl, squeeze each head of garlic gently with your fingers to expel the cloves. Add the olive oil and stir with a rubber spatula to blend thoroughly. Spread the mixture over the pizza crust.

Yield: Each head yields about 1 1/2 tablespoons, 2 heads about 3 tablespoons

See, that was easy, right? Now, for the toppings. I was thinking simpler is better, so I just put some basil leaves and fresh mozzarella on top.

In all this pizza is okay but it could be better. Even with the basil most of what you taste is garlic. It could use something to lighten it up a bit. To that end Karen isn’t a really big fan right now. In fact I’ve made this pizza twice now (yes, the same exact pizza twice) and this last time she ate none. Neither did Aliyah. Does that count as ruined? When I asked Karen how to make it better her suggestion was to add tomatoes.

At least the picture is nice, right?

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6 responses

6 07 2008
Chennette

That first picture is gorgeous…so delicious looking – is this with the new camera?
Actually, I’ve never tried to make a white pizza, but I love roasted garlic..maybe a different cheese though?

6 07 2008
mark - in my own defense

Thanks, Chennette. I’ve been inspired by yours and a lot of other sites out there with food porn. I took this with my camera, which I’ve had since January. I did, however, utilize my new high-tech lighting gear. I think I’ll blog about that in the near future as well.

7 07 2008
Karen

I DID try the pizza this time! It was OK, but somehow I think that pizza without tomato or tomato sauce is missing its most important and delicious ingredient. To me, it just tastes like it’s missing something.

7 07 2008
Nicole

Hey Mark,
The last time I made the pizza dough, I had to use lots of extra flour also. And using bread flour is a great idea and I do the same thing when I have it on hand. As for the white pizza, I sometimes just use olive oil as a base, but here’s something else that works really well. Put one cup of heavy cream in a saucepan and add one whole clove of garlic that’s been smashed a little. Heat the cream and garlic, stirring, til it just comes to a simmer then cook, stirring til it thickens just a bit. Remove from heat and remove the garlic. Then just season with a little salt and pepper. Then use a bit of the cream for the pizza sauce. It adds just a hint of garlic but isn’t overpowering. But really you just need a little bit of cream per pizza…don’t overdo it! Then add whatever cheese and toppings you want. I like mine with mozzarella, goat cheese and artichoke hearts.

7 07 2008
Daddy Forever

Looks good. I should learn how to make pizza too. It’s getting a bit expensive ordering pizza from the Hut. They raised their prices recently.

8 07 2008
Suzanne

Mark, do you read 101 Cookbooks? It’s a brilliant food blog that is…well, tempting. She talked about pizza recently: http://www.101cookbooks.com/

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