Sunday, September 13, 2009

Pizza Night
Once again the Foodie Daughter asked me to make a special dish for dinner. She asked that I make a stuffed crust pizza. Well, I raised her bet and decided to make Rosie Hawthorne's Caesar Salad to go with the pizza. I also opted to follow Rosie's advice for making pizza, but more on that later.

My mise en place for Caesar Salad Dressing:
5 cloves garlic
2 lemons
1 teaspoon anchovy paste
1 egg
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard (Rosie calls for 1 tablespoon)
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 cup Extra virgin olive oil, more or less

I coddled the egg by bringing some water to a boil and then adding the egg to the water and letting it sit in the water for one minute.

The minced garlic, juiced lemons, anchovy paste (1/2 teaspoon equals 2 anchovy fillets), Worcestershire sauce and Dijon mustard were mixed together. Then the coddled egg was whisked in. Finally the olive oil was whisked in before the grated Parmesan cheese was stirred in the dressing.
Then it was time to begin working on the pizza dough. Despite Rosie Hawthorne's assurances that bread making is not that difficult, I think the real problem that the rest of us mere mortals have with the process is that one never knows just how much flour one will need for the same recipe. One day 2 cups might be all that is needed while another day 3-1/2 cups might be required. This is scary stuff for novice bread makers.

At any rate, I started with one of Rosie's recipes for pizza dough.
Here I have:
1 cup warm water,
1 egg
1 teaspoon sugar
1 package yeast
1 teaspoon salt
black pepper, optional
olive oil
2-1/2 cups flour, more or less

I added the yeast and sugar to the warm water and allowed that to proof for a while.

Once the yeast had proofed, I added the egg and mixed that in.

I then began stirring in the flour, 1/2 cup at a time. And stirring and stirring until I had gone through the entire 2-1/2 cups and the mixture was still more batter than dough.

Well, Rosie said that the amount of flour was just a starting point. Let's hope she's right.
I wonder, though. Does Rosie ever end up with club hand while kneading the dough?

Finally after adding in perhaps another 1-1/2 cups of flour,
I had reached that wondrous state of elasticity. Well, the dough had, not me.

I placed the dough in an oiled bowl and turned the dough to coat with oil.

I covered the bowl with plastic wrap before using Rosie's tip of wetting a towel and nuking the towel in the microwave before covering the bowl with the hot towel.
This went into the microwave for about an hour or until the dough had doubled in size.

That looks about right.

I floured my fist before punching down the dough.

I then kneaded this a bit more and decided that I would have enough dough to make some bread sticks to go along with the pizza.

Yeah, something like that.

I decided to knead some dried Herbes de Provence and grated Parmesan cheese into the bread stick dough.

That was ridiculously easy.

The Foodie Daughter wandered in and showed me a copy-cat recipe for Pizza Hut's bread sticks. Please, Mom, will you make this topping for the bread sticks? Yes, dear.
The ingredients are:
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon garlic salt
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1/4 cup olive oil, to coat bread sticks

The Foodie Daughter mixed together the ingredients for the topping.

I cut the bread sticks apart and then coated them with olive oil and the seasoning mix.

I followed Rosie's advice to push the dough a bit then let it rest. Luckily, I had enough other jobs going on that I was too busy to fuss over the dough.

The dough was finally stretched out and I had cut some mozzarella for the crust. I then folded the crust over the cheese slices.

I rubbed some olive oil over the crust and poked holes in the crust with a fork.

Then the Foodie Daughter decided that the crust needed some of the seasoning mix.
I baked the crust in a 425 degree oven for 7 minutes before pulling it out so the toppings could be applied.
In the meantime, the bread sticks baked in the oven until they were done. I pulled the bread sticks out of the oven when they smelled done.

First up was the tomato sauce. I used a jarred sauce that I had on hand.

Shredded mozzarella, diced cooked ham, chopped cooked bacon and chopped onion went on next.

Then more mozzarella covered that. Finally, pepperoni that was placed on a paper towel and cooked in the microwave for 30 seconds to remove some of the grease topped the pizza (another patented Rosie tip). This went back into the oven to finish baking.

And just in time as the bread sticks were done.

Melted butter and warm tomato sauce accompanied the bread sticks.

A classic Caesar salad with Romaine lettuce and homemade rye bread croutons rounded out the meal.

I think this is just what the Foodie Daughter ordered. Too bad she doesn't tip, though.
Many thanks to Rosie Hawthorne for her recipes and directions on her blog, Kitchens are Monkey Business. I couldn't have done this without her. And if not for her wise advice, I most certainly would have been panicking when the dough began eating all that flour.


Rosie Hawthorne said...

Looks delicious.
And that wasn't hard now, was it?

Don't you feel empowered?

Hairball said...

Go Marilyn! :)