The heat wave of late is making us eager to welcome the crisp fall air. Who else is ready to fire up the oven and cook a few simple and delicious cool weather staples? Lucky for us, we can start this weekend - first up: a delicious twist on everyone's favorite, pizza! Maggie is back and promises this recipe is worth the extra heat (if you are like us and don't want to wait for temps to drop). Enjoy!
Maggie's note: This no-knead pizza dough recipe was found on The Vanilla Bean Blog. It is great and easy, but will yield 8, 1/2 pound pizzas, 8 inches across - so do plan ahead.
3 1/2 cups of lukewarm water
1 tablespoon of granulated yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons of salt
7 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
Mix yeast, salt and water in a large bowl, then add flour and mix.
Do not knead; instead, use a spoon or mixer with the paddle attachment and mix until dough texture is consistent.
Cover the dough for approximately 2 hours (this allows the dough to rise and collapse).
Refrigerate for another 2 hours before building pizza.
15 fresh asparagus
5 fresh basil leaves, chopped
8 ounces of feta cheese crumbles
6-12 garlic cloves - or more if you like
2 small roasted or baked chicken breasts
salt and pepper to taste
Pizza Topping & Assembly Directions:
1) Preheat oven at 500 degrees. Saute the garlic cloves in a pan with olive oil until golden brown. Add salt and pepper if desired
2) Sprinkle flour on top of your pizza pan or whatever surface you'll be baking your pizza on. Stretch an orange-sized amount of dough into pizza shape. Refrigerate remaining dough and use within 14 days.
3) Half your lemon and squeeze 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice into a bowl. Add 1/4 cup of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt. Mix together. With a hand peeler, create asparagus ribbons by running your peeler down the length of the stock. Once you've created your asparagus ribbons set them aside to top the pizza. (You can find a great ribbon tutorial here!). Chop the fresh basil and set aside.
4) With a pastry brush, cover your pizza dough with olive oil mixture. Then spread a layer of feta cheese. Sprinkle in the garlic and fresh basil. Add salt and ground pepper if desired. Lay the asparagus ribbons over the top of the cheese and garlic toppings. Cut your roast chicken into 1- 2 inch bites and randomly top them on the pizza. Add more cheese!
5) Place pizza in oven to bake for 10-14 minutes at 450 degrees. Take pizza out when dough has reached a golden brown color - cool, cut and enjoy!
p.s. Looking for more fall recipes, check out another seasonal favorite: Roasted Carrot Soup!