Thursday, May 19, 2011

Onion and Goat Cheese Pizza

This pizza is somewhat of a collaborative effort: the recipe for the topping is by my friend Jen, and I got the recipe for the dough from the Legal Chef. Any mistakes made were my own.

First, for the dough: the Legal Chef gave me precise quantities, but hardly any instructions (including “just prepare as usual for any pizza”). This was my first time making pizza dough that wasn’t wet, so I used the instructions in Baking Illustrated as a guide. I give more detailed ones below. The dough itself was a success; however, the Legal Chef failed to mention that these quantities are for several pizza pies – I’m guessing four pies, but definitely a few. I did have an inkling of a clue as I was turning it out onto the countertop after the final rise, because the Legal Chef is known for his sometimes overly thin crusts, and this dough was a behemoth. But you know what? I was lazy and I didn’t want to deal with it, so I used the whole thing. It was too much, of course, and I recommend halving the recipe below. Had I bothered to follow even Jen’s instructions carefully, this would have been avoided, because she does say to use only ½ lb of dough.

Second, the topping: the only variation between Jen’s recipe and what I did is that I used 113 g of goat cheese (the whole package) instead of 70 g, but who’s counting? I don’t regret it one bit; this pizza reminded me how much I miss goat cheese. That thing is so good! None of the stores here stock my lactose-free brand (Whole Foods does not intend to order it for me, and none of my emails to HEB have been returned; maybe I’ll get on Central Market’s case next). So I did have to take Lactaid for this, but it was worth every pill. And of course, I love caramelized onions, so this was a great combination.

For the dough (this is for a few pizzas, feel free to halve it)
20.25 oz flour
1 ¾ tsp salt
1 tsp instant yeast
¼ cup olive oil
1 ¾ cup ice water

In the bowl of a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, mix the flour, salt and instant yeast. Add the olive oil and water and mix until dry and wet ingredients are combined. When the dough forms a cohesive mass, switch to the dough hook and knead the dough until it is elastic and clears the sides of the bowl.

Put the dough into a deep oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and place into the fridge overnight or for up to 3 days. Allow to rest at room temperature for 2 hours before attempting to shape and bake.

For the caramelized red onions
2 medium red onions, sliced thinly
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, divided
1 Tbsp sugar (I used brown sugar)
5 Tbsp water
1 tsp coarse salt, or to taste
pepper, to taste

Over medium heat, in a non-stick pan, combine olive oil and onions and cook for 15 minutes or until onions soften. Add 2 Tbsp of balsamic vinegar and sugar and continue to cook for another 15 minutes over low heat. Continue to stir and add water and continue to cook for an additional 10 to 15 minutes or until the onions show a deep jammy dark brown colour. Add the remaining 1 Tbsp of balsamic vinegar and season to taste with coarse salt and pepper. Cook for an additional 5 minutes. When onions are soft and jammy, take them off the heat and allow them to cool.

To assemble the pizza
½ lb prepared risen pizza dough, rolled out to a 12-inch round
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup caramelized onions
70 g goat cheese (or more, to taste)

Preheat oven to 425 °F. Place a pizza stone in the oven. Brush olive oil on edge of pizza. Spread caramelized onions on top of dough. Top with crumbled goat cheese. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until pizza crust is a golden brown.


Anonymous said...

Yeah, the 70g of goat cheese from the original recipe is definitely a pain. We almost always use more goat cheese than that (ie. the whole package), because what are you going to do with 35g of goat cheese?
I've also found that increasing the quantity of onions is also good. Heck - this topping is so good that just having more of it is period.
Glad you liked this one! Has Jen posted the burst tomato pizza recipe? That one is my new favourite.

Amélie said...

Burst tomato... That doesn't ring a bell, so I don't think she's posted it. But it does sound good!

I'm with you for the goat cheese. It always comes in small packages anyway, so I usually put the whole thing in whatever I'm making and then I don't have to worry about leftovers.