Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sausage, Arugula, and Parsley Pizza

Source:  adapted from Country Living magazine

6 oz. sweet Italian sausage
1 T. plus 1 t. extra-virgin olive oil
1 recipe Peter Reinhart's All-Purpose Pizza Dough (or your own favorite pizza dough)
3 whole peeled canned tomatoes, crushed
1 T. tomato paste
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
coarse sea salt
1/4 t. red pepper flakes
4 oz. fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
Garnish:  flat-leaf parsley leaves and arugula, tossed with 1 t. olive oil and 1/2 t. vinegar, plus Parmesan shavings

Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

Remove sausage from casings.  Crumble and saute over high heat until browned and cooked through.

Combine tomatoes, tomato paste, garlic, 1 T. oil, 1/4 t. salt and red pepper.  Spread over dough.  Scatter mozzarella and sausage on top.
Bake as directed according to Peter Reinhart's dough recipe.
Garnish with parsley, arugula and Parmesan.

Peter Reinhart's Pizza Margherita

This is simple, classic pizza at its best!! Peter Reinhart is a genius!

Source:  Better Homes and Gardens magazine, February 2012

Mozzarella cheese
Parmesan cheese
basil leaves
olive oil

Simply top each pizza with 1/4 - 1/2 c. pizza sauce, 1/2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese, 1 T. grated Parmesan cheese and a few basil fresh leaves brushed with olive oil.  Bake as directed in Pizza Dough recipe above.


Peter Reinhart's All-Purpose Pizza Sauce

"Many people don't realize how easy it is to make your own [sauce] and how good it is.  Resist the urge to use too much; the sauce should just kiss the dough."
- Peter Reinhart

Source:  adapted from Better Homes & Gardens magazine, February 2012

1 28-oz. can crushed tomatoes*
1 1/2 t. red wine vinegar
1/2 t. granulated garlic or garlic powder (or 2 cloves garlic, minced)
1/2 t. dried basil (or 1 1/2 t. fresh basil, finely chopped)
1/4 t. dried oregano (or 3/4 t. fresh, finely chopped)
1/4 t. dried thyme (or 3/4 t. fresh, finely chopped)
1/4 t. ground black pepper
1/4 to 1/2 t. salt
1/4 to 1/2 c. water

In a medium bowl whisk together all ingredients except salt and water.  Taste sauce and whisk in 1/4 c. water and enough salt to taste.  If necessary, add more water to thin.  (According to Peter, "If the sauce is thick at this stage it will be pasty on the pizza.  It should easily spread over the dough.")  Taste again and adjust the salt, if needed. 

Makes 3 cups

*Peter's note: "The best brand of tomatoes for pizza sauce is the one you already love.  They all work well.  This sauce doesn't need cooking because the tomatoes are cooked when they're canned and the sauce cooks in the oven."

*My note:  I found that my tomatoes were a bit too juicy (they weren't a paste variety), so I drained them, but reserved the juice in case I needed it later.  I also did not need to add the extra water.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

White Bean and Garlic Scapes Dip

It's amazing what a few short years can teach you!  I've only been growing my own garlic for 2 years now, and never even knew what garlic scapes were until last summer when my cousin told me about them.  So, I was quite eager to try them in this recipe this year!


1/3 c. sliced garlic scapes (3-4)
1 T. freshly squeezed lemon juice, more to taste
1/2 t. coarse sea salt, more to taste
ground black pepper to taste
1 can (15 oz.) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil, more for drizzling

In a food processor, process garlic scapes with lemon juice, salt and pepper until finely chopped.  Add cannellinin beans and process to a rough puree.

With motor running, slowly drizzle olive oil though feed tube and process until fairly smooth.  Pulse in 2-3 T. water, or more, until mixture is the consistency of a dip.  Add more salt, pepper and/or lemon juice, if desired.

Spread out dip on a plate, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with more sea salt.

Yield:  1 1/2 cups

Note:  I wanted a thicker consistency for spreading on crostinis, so I followed the recipe above, but then added another can of partially processed cannellini beans to give it a bit more texture, then added more garlic scapes, lemon juice and salt to taste.