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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Red and Yellow Italian Pizza

During my first trip to Italy I discovered Margerita Pizza, a simple pizza with just a little sauce, fresh basil and fresh buffalo mozzarella.  The freshness of the ingredients really stands out.  This is a little twist on that pizza.  Pizza is one of those things that just about everyone loves, and with all the variations on it, you could have it a couple times a week without anyone getting tired of it.

Although I normally just buy pizza crust because it's convient, this crust is tastier than most you could buy because of the herbs in it.  Plus, it's really not the difficult.  If you don't want to waste the other half packet of yeast, double the recipe and bake two crusts.  Let one cool competely, then freeze it in a air tight bag. 


    For the crust:
    1 1/2 cups white flour
    1/2 package dry yeast (about 1/2 teaspoon)
    1/2 cup warm water
    1 tablespoon vegetable oil
    1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    1 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
    1 1/2 teaspoon dry basil

    For the toppings:
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    2 cups cherry tomatoes (red and yellow)
    3 cloves minced garlic
    8 ounces fresh mozzarella
    10-15 large leaves of fresh basil


    For the pizza crust:
    If you have a stand mixer (like a KitchenAid), use the dough hook. Place the water in the bottom of the bowl. Layer the flour on top, letting it mound up in the middle. Using the back of a spoon, create a small indentation in the flour and pour the yeast in the dent. Add in the basil, garlic and onion powders. For the first few seconds, run the mixer on lower then increase the speed. Mix it until the dough forms a ball and all of the flour has been mixed in.
    If you don't have a mixer, mix the herbs, yeast and half the flour. Add the flour mixture to the water with a spoon. Continue adding the flour and mixing with a spoon until no more will mix in. Place the dough on a floured surface and knead in the remaining flour a little at a time.
    Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the dough on a plate and loosely cover with a cloth towel. Place it on the stove for about ten minutes (the heat from the preheating oven will help the dough rise). After the dough has rest, flatten the dough into a 1/4-1/2 inch thick circle. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until it starts to brown.

    While the crust is rising, cut the tomatoes in half. Pat the mozzarella with paper towel to remove the extra moisture and cut into 1/4 inch slices. Snip the basil leaves in small pieces (I use herb scissors, they cut the herbs into 1/8-1/4 inch pieces).
    After the crust is done baking, lightly brush the pizza crust with the olive oil. Layer the mozzarella slices over the crust and evenly top with tomato halves and garlic. Bake at 400 degrees for another 5-7 minutes, until the cheese has melted. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the basil.

Nutritional Info
  • Servings Per Recipe: 4
  • Amount Per Serving
  • Calories: 385.5
  • Total Fat: 13.1 g
  • Cholesterol: 32.9 mg
  • Sodium: 267.7 mg
  • Total Carbs: 45.5 g
  • Dietary Fiber: 2.3 g
  • Protein: 20.7 g

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