Tomato, Cherry and Goat Cheese Salad
Can we all just agree that tomato season is the best season?
I realize that makes an unwieldy post title, but that’s just too bad – I couldn’t leave any of those amazing ingredients out. We make quite a few pizzas at home – probably almost one each week (It’s funny to think that when we lived closer to Safeway (good store-brand frozen pizzas), we ate frozen pizzas more often). This one is one of the best we’ve ever made. Or really, Dave has ever made. Because he made it. I chopped the dates – but it wasn’t because I was being a bum. It was because I was making yesterday’s Tapenade Toasts. Promise.
Holy moly, this pizza was delicious. I am so sad that it’s gone. We used a lot of techniques that we learned at our fun class at Lincoln a few weeks ago, and basically all of them paid off big time. We tried a new technique for the crust, for starters, and – well, I’ll save the rest for the actual directions.
I can’t wait to make this one again.
Here’s what you need.
For the crust:
1 cup sourdough starter
1/2 cup hot tap water
2 1/2 cups AP flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
Plenty of olive oil
For the toppings:
Approximately 1/2 lb. of deli-sliced provolone
2-3 slices of bacon
1/2 white onion
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh oregano
A few grates of Parmesan
Salt and pepper
The dough will need to rise for at least two hours. Mix all ingredients together (paddle attachment is best), knead for about five minutes and allow to rise until doubled in size. Like I said – probably two hours. Ish.
Preheat the oven to 450.
Here’s where it gets fun and unusual, and where Dave used a technique we learned at the class at Lincoln. Pour probably 1/2 cup of olive oil right onto a small cookie sheet (a half sheet pan is too big for this recipe – go one size smaller). Tilt the sheet to coat the entire surface in oil and then put your pizza dough on the top. Wet your fingers in the oil and use your fingertips to smoosh the crust out to all of the edges. It may spring back a bit, that is ok. Keep working it for a while – it will spread when it bakes, too.
Next, ready the toppings. Start by cooking the bacon, cut into pretty small 1/4-inch pieces, until it is not quite well done. Add the onions in about halfway through and cook until a little (but not totally) caramelized. Remember, these are going in the oven. Chop the dates into little pieces while the bacon and onions are cooking. When they’re all done, put them all on top of the pizza, and then cover with the sliced cheese.
Bake for about 15 minutes. Cover with herbs and season with salt and pepper when finished. Try not to eat it all at once 🙂