Friday, September 24, 2010

Fruit Pizza

Ingredients for fruit topping:
2 cups red wine
1/3 cup confectioners' sugar plus additional for dusting, if desired
2 pints fresh blackberries
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1/2 orange, zested
kosher salt

2 baked 6-inch pizzas

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Ingredients for the pizza dough:
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups warm water (about 110 degrees F)
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour, plus additional for rolling dough
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 scant T honey
1 T extra virgin olive oil, plus some additional for coating the bowl/greasing the trays

Preparing the dough:
In a large bowl, combine the yeast and warm water. Stir to dissolve the yeast and allow the mixture to rest for 5 minutes.

Using a sieve or strainer, "sift" about half of the flour over the yeast mixture and blend until smooth with your hands. Add the salt, pepper and honey and mix to blend. Sift in the remaining flour and mix to blend.

Lightly flour a cutting board or flat surface. Turn the pizza dough onto the floured area and knead for 3 to 5 minutes. The flour should feel smooth and the ingredients fully integrated. Place the dough inside a lightly oiled large bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest in a warm place, about 1 1/2 hours or until doubled in volume.

Press gently on the dough and turn it onto a floured surface. Divide the dough into 4 equal parts, rolling each quarter into a loose ball. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and allow the dough to rest for an additional 15 minutes. Flatten each ball, one at a time, and roll into a 6-inch round. Place each round in a single layer on a lightly greased baking sheet.

When ready to bake, brush the top of the dough with olive oil before layering on toppings to create a barrier that will help to prevent the crust from getting soggy.

Makes 4 6-inch pizzas

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Preparing the pizza:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a cast iron skillet large enough to hold 1 of the pizza rounds, heat about 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. When the oil begins to smoke lightly, turn heat off and add 1 of the pizza rounds. Sprinkle sanding sugar judiciously over the dough. Use a spatula to press gently on the top of the round to keep it relatively flat as it cooks. When you see it is slightly brown on the underside, flip the round on its second side and sprinkle sanding sugar over this side of the pizza. Place the skillet in the center of the oven until the pizza has finished cooking, 5 to 8 minutes. Repeat with remaining dough and topping.

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Preparing the fruit topping:
Preheat the grill (or, alternatively, the oven to 350 degrees F)

In a large skillet, reduce the red wine by half over medium heat and whisk in the confectioners' sugar. When the mixture thickens slightly, gently stir in the blackberries and simmer, 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside.

Put the ricotta in a separate bowl. Grate a little orange zest (about 1 teaspoon) over the ricotta, add a pinch of salt and stir to blend.

Spread an even layer of the ricotta on the pizzas and place on the grill to warm them. Alternatively, bake for 3 to 5 minutes in oven. Warm the blackberry mixture. Note: If the blackberry liquid is thin, strain the blackberries out and reserve them. Reduce the liquid until thick and mix it back in with the blackberries.

Top the pizzas with the fruit and serve immediately. Dust with additional powdered sugar.


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