July 06, 2012

Straight from the Pizza Stone

The Garden is bountiful- Mine and friends alike.  So, you can imagine the counters overflowing with garden goodness!!! I know Tracy is looking for ideas for her tomatoes, so here is a GREAT idea for all of you!

I spent 30 minutes last night going through every tomato recipe I could quickly get my hands on trying to figure out what new to do with our plethora of the red delicious counter decor that we have in abundance!  Might I also mention- a ton of fresh corn given to us, Thank God truly for friends that like to share!  I have basil growing like crazy- so we have already had tomato, basil bruschetta several times in the last few weeks.

Here is what I found that looked AmaZiNG!!  Tomato and Corn Pizza- Yep- you read it Right!!!!  I could not resist once I read the ingredients- I had them ALL- amazing!! This was found in a magazine called Southern Living- I know some of you have never heard of it- and that you aren't familiar with all their fabulous tried and true recipes.....so I try them for you and let you know that yes- They REALLY are ThAt good!!!! This was from July 2010 issue.  So many amazing recipes- I kept the whole magazine (not just torn out recipes!)

So- it was a three part recipe and if you have the garden goodness like we do, I hope you will want to enjoy and make this from scratch as well! It was T-o-t-a-l-l-y worth it- all the little mouths at our table agreed, and we had alot on this particular day!

First things first- When we go visit my Cattleman husbands family, my mother in law always makes homemade pizza crust.  Yum.  I have found that I'm partial to crust that has some cornmeal in, on or around it.  So, thanks to a cookbook from my sweet mother in law- I added cornmeal to the recipe and loved the results!!

Here goes; Taken from The King Arthur Flour 200th Anniversary Cookbook- you will not want pre-made pizza crust ever again!

{click here if you want a printable version of the recipe.}


1 3/4 c. warm water (about 115 degrees)
1 TBSP sugar
1 packet or 1 TBSP active dry yeast
6 c. King Arthur Unbleached All Purpose Flour (it is from their cookbook........use what you have!)
1/4 c. olive oil (whatever flavor you prefer!)
1 TBSP salt
Cornmeal for kneading/rolling

Preparing the dough: Pour water into a mixing bowl and dissolve in it the sugar and yeast.  When yeast is active, add first cup of flour, then the oil and salt.  Add another 4 1/2 c. flour, mixing with a large spoon until the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl and holds together.
Kneading: Sprinkle the last 1/2 cup of flour onto your kneading surface along with about 1-2 TBSP cornmeal as needed.  Turn out the dough and knead until it begins to feel as if it really belongs together, adding only enough flour to keep it from sticking to the board- or you! Let it rest while you clean and grease your bowl.  Continue kneading the relaxed dough until it feels smooth and springy.  I always enjoy kneading dough- kind of takes your mind off of anything else.
Rising: Form dough into a ball, place in greased bowl, turning so top is slightly greased.  Cover and put where warm and draft free.  Let rise until doubled- when you pike your finger in it and the dough doesn't spring back at you- then it's ready to roll!
Shaping Dough: Punch dough down, turn onto flour/ cornmeal mixed counter or board and knead out any stray bubbles. Cut it into number of pieces you need depending on whether thin or thick crust devotee.  I will tell you- I kept it one and rolled onto a rectangular baking stone- it was a SuPer thiCK crust!  I think it would make two round crusts (thin) easily!
Flatten pieces with hand, and with flour dusted rolling pin roll piece out- literally- from middle of dough outward. Never back and forth.
If you like a softer crust, lightly wipe pan with olive oil.  If you like a dryer, crunchier crust, sprinkle it with cornmeal!  When dough is about size you want, slide onto prepared pan. Brush lightly with olive oil to keep the topping from soaking in and making it soggy.
Baking:  Pre-bake crust at 475 for 10-12 minutes before loading with toppings! It will probably puff up while baking, just press the air out of it before adding toppings.

I prepared the Basil Pesto while the dough was rising........

My own version based on what I had on hand today!

2 cups fresh basil, loosely packed
1 cup toasted sunflower seeds (most recipes call for pine nuts- but those are not common in my house)
5 cloves garlic (peeled of course- and minced)
1 tsp salt
1.5 cups fresh grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup olive oil (your fav flavor)

Blend first 5 up in a food processor adding olive oil in a steady stream at the end. This will make more than you need for the pizza- so plan on having some good crackers or garlic bread ready for the rest of it!  Yum!

Now on to the Good Stuff......

Tomato - and- Corn Pizza

3 small plum tomatoes (or whatever you have on your counter!!!!) sliced
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp freshly ground pepper
1 pre-baked pizza crust (you can buy Boboli or some other brand if you want!)
1/3 c. refrigerated pesto
1/2 c. fresh corn kernels
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. sugar
8 oz. fresh mozzarella, sliced
3 Tbsp. fresh whole or torn basil leaves

1. Preheat oven to 450.  Place tomato slices on paper towels. Sprinkle with salt and pepper; let stand 20 minutes.
2. Place pizza crust on a parchment paper lined baking sheet; spread with pesto. Stir together corn, Parmesan, and sugar. Top pizza with corn mixture, tomatoes, and mozzarella slices.
3. Bake at 450 for 14 minutes or until cheese is melted and golden. Remove from oven, and top with basil leaves.
Yum, YUm and YUM!  The flavors are Amazing together!!!!

Let me know if you try this- and Let me know what your counter is overflowing with!!!!


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