Tuesday, July 9, 2013

A Twist on Everyone's Favorite: Pepperoni Pizza

Sorry! Sorry! Sorry!  I know my last post was a pizza recipe, but I had leftover dough and had to do something with it!  Something fabulously delicious, I might add.  I am been completely inspired by all of the gorgeous tomatoes this season and have been whipping up yumminess left and right.  And, seriously, who doesn't like farm grown tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, and basil from your garden?  I am retracting my former apologies and officially saying "You're welcome!"  This is my version of a Pepperoni Pizza.  

Pepperoni Pizza

1 pizza crust or dough
1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves
1/2 lb of mozzarella cheese, sliced
Pepperoni (as much as you like)
3 tomatoes, sliced and seeded
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
Basil leaves, julienned 

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  Prepare your pan or pizza stone with a sprinkling of cornmeal to prevent the dough from sticking.  The cornmeal is necessary if you are using dough; if you are using a premade crust then you can omit this step.  Drizzle the dough with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic.  Throw it in the oven for 5-10 minutes until it is partially cooked so the dough is not mushy in the middle.  No droopy, sad pizzas allowed!

While the dough is in the oven, grab your tomatoes and slice them.  Now, this is very important: seed the tomato slices and pat them dry with a paper towel.  Get as much water out of them as you can.  Sprinkle the slices with salt and pepper.  By this time your kitchen will be wonderfully fragrant with the roasting garlic.  

Remove the crust from the oven and begin layering the ingredients.  The order is very important, as well!  Cover your crust with your mozzarella leaving a 1 inch rim of crust on the outside.  Think of the cheese as the glue that holds the whole masterpiece together.  Following the cheese, artfully lay out your pepperoni slices.  I always use turkey pepperoni, but if you are feeling utterly sinful, I won't judge you for using the real stuff.

Lovingly lay out your vibrant tomato slices and top them with the parmesan cheese.  I know this layering seems somewhat backwards, but the tomato will put off a lot of water.  If they are on the bottom layer the crust will get soggy.  Place your pizza back in the oven and bake it for 15 minutes.  I hit mine with the broiler to get that crispy, brown top which I love!  Remove your delicious dinner and sprinkle the top with your basil leaves. 

I hope you enjoy this fresh summer pizza as much as Matt and I did.  It was comforting in the fact that it was bready and cheesy.  Matt loved it because I did not hide veggies like bell peppers and onions in it.  I loved it because it is packed with lycopene and various antioxidants.  I hope you love it too!

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