Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Prosciutto and Asparagus Pizza

Is it really worth it?  That's the numero uno question I get about making your own pizza dough.  My response is usually the same.  Hell yeah it's worth it....AYFKM?  I remember back in the day when I used to buy those Boboli pre-made crusts and thought that was the shit, I'm making my own homemade pizza!!  But once you make a few pizzas from scratch, it's as easy as breathing.  There's only 5 ingredients and it takes a mere 10 minutes to get a dough going.  Even if you use a stand mixer, as I do, you still should knead by hand for a few minutes also just to give it that extra touch and as a side effect you become more involved with what you are cramming in your pie hole.  Touching your food is always a good thing, especially if it's in the raw or work in progress stage.  Sure, you'll need a pizza stone and a peel to make it easy on you, but after that investment you'll be whipping out pies on the cheap.  It might take a few pies to get the hang of the transfer from peel to stone, but it's quick learning and the payoff is well worth the minimal investment. 

It's been years since I had a pizza delivered, and I honestly can't remember the last time I resorted to a frozen one.  For sure I can mess up a Jack's (4 for $10 at Jewel, all the time) frozen pizza like no one else, but there's something so satisfying and easy about making your own that it's my first option.  Get after it. 

You can use plain all-purpose (AP in most postings)  flour, but the higher protein content of bread flour will give you a crunchier bite. 

Prosciutto and Asparagus Pizza 

For the pizza dough-
1 ts or one packet of self-rising yeast, 1 C of warm water, add 1 ts honey and stir well. Let sit until nice and bubbly, about 6 minutes. Meanwhile, add 1 ts kosher salt, 2 ts EVOO, 2.25 C bread flour (king arthur preferred) into the bowl of your stand mixer. Or a large bowl if hand kneading. Add wet to dry and stir to incorporate, then knead using the dough hook for about 5 minutes. The dough will become shiny and elastic. Turn out onto very lightly floured surface and knead by hand for 1-2 minutes, then shape into a ball. Rub or spray a little oil on the inside of the bowl, add your dough ball and toss around, then cover with a kitchen towel and place in a draft-free area for about 1.5-2 hrs, until the dough has doubled in size. Turn out and punch down, cover with plastic wrap and kitchen towel until ready to use. Can be parked in fridge too, bring to room temp when ready. Don't have a stand mixer? Knead by hand for 10 minutes. Go buy stand mixer.

The rest- you'll need a bunch of asparagus, trimmed and shaved or sliced thinly, some quality prosciutto, mozzarella, EVOO, and 1 clove of garlic thinly sliced.  Once your dough has rested for at least 10 minutes once punched down, it should be nice and pliable and ready to roll out.  Your oven should be pre-heated with the stone in to 500F for 30+ minutes.  Sprinkle your pizza peel with yellow corn meal so the dough releases easily during the transfer.  Prick the dough with a fork, then coat with a few TB's of EVOO.  Toss around a few thin slices of garlic, some caramelized onions if you like, layer on the paper-thin slices of proscuitto, then slices or shreds of mozzarella, and finally the asparagus.  Season with freshly cracked black pepper, then cook for about 10-12 minutes, until nicely browned and crispy.  Let sit for 5 minutes before carving into shapes preferable for eating. 

Mis en place- while the oven is heating and the dough is resting makes preparing this pizza a schnap.

1 comment:

  1. This is one of the best pizzas made to date!!