Fancy Pants Pizza

This is Monday night pie. It’s “I don’t want to wait six hours for my dough to proof” pie. It’s discount ends from the cheese-bin and cherry tomatoes on-sale pie. It’s cook in a cast-iron and eat while watching the Great British Bake Off pie. It’s wake up in the morning and immediately have the leftovers for breakfast pie. It’s faux Neapolitan and sort of classic tasting but definitely improvised pie. It’s fancy pants pie for those of us who aren’t actually fancy, but want to feel that way every once in a while.

[Despite making homemade pizza for years, this is the first recipe I’ve wanted to share with others. So, uh, yup, hope you enjoy!]

F9FE67CD-2A78-4397-A828-2DB15AD77675

Dough

I use a pizza dough recipe from Epicurious, except that I sub 1 cup all-purpose flour and 1 cup bread flour for the 2 cups of all-purpose in the recipe.

Toppings

1 heaping cup grape or cherry tomatoes
Olive oil
Sea salt
Pepper
Oregano
1/4 cup grated pecorino romano or parmigiano-reggiano
1/3 cup grated ricotta salata
6-8 one-inch slices of medium-hard sheep’s milk cheese (sub low-moisture mozzarella in a pinch)
4 large or 8 small rounds of salami
2 handfuls mixed hearty greens (spinach, baby kale or finely chopped kale, mizuna, chard etc)
Flaky sea salt
Red pepper flakes

For the tomato confit: Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the tomatoes in a baking dishes and cover generously with olive oil, so that the entire bottom of the dish and all the tomatoes are covered. Roast for twenty minutes. Pull out and sprinkle with a pinch of oregano, pepper, and salt. Roast for five more minutes, then remove the tomatoes from the oven and let them cool.

Putting It All Together!

  1. Make the dough and then, while the dough is resting, prep the toppings (see above).
  2. Punch down the dough, as the Epicurious dough recipe instructs. Then turn it out on a floured cutting board and rest it again for ten to fifteen minutes. As soon as the dough begins the second rest, pre-heat the oven to 500 degrees.
  3. Five minutes before the dough is done resting, put your cast iron baking sheet or well-seasoned cast iron pan in the oven to pre-heat it. Pull it out and coat it with a thin layer of olive oil just before you’re ready to roll out your dough. (Be careful, it will be veerrrry hot!)
  4. Roll out the dough on the cutting board, then shape it with your hands. Don’t let it get too thin, and feel free to leave a thick-ish crust. You want your dough to fit fully inside your cast-iron, so if it’s a smaller size pan I recommend splitting the dough and making two personal pizzas.
  5. As soon as the dough is shaped carefully place it on the cast-iron. You should hear the bottle sizzle and begin to cook–that’s fine.
  6. To top: Drizzle olive oil and sea salt onto the pie. Spoon the tomato confit evenly, and gently press down on the individual tomatoes to lightly crush them. Evenly disperse two handfuls of greens. Place one or two pieces of salami, depending on the size, on each quadrant of the pie. Sprinkle the hard cheeses (ricotta salata and pecorino/parmigiano) onto the pie, getting just a little bit on the crust. Place the mozzarella or other medium hard cheese slices onto the pie in any way you choose.
  7. Bake at 500 degrees for ten minutes, then turn the broiler on for one minute. Pull out and sprinkle with flaky sea salt and red pepper.
  8. Cool, slice and enjoy!