Monday, August 31, 2009
Pizza and Onions and Fresh Herbs...
The other night, I got a text from Bryn: she had a hankering for pizza, but the last time I went to my favorite pizza place, the bill with tip? $100 for four of us. Sure, we got some wine, a salad and some wings, but I just can't do the $100 pizza nights any longer.
So I opened the fridge. Sauce? Check. Cheese? Check. Onions (my own personal requirement)? Check. Fresh Herbs? Check (front "garden" yields basil AND rosemary).
So I quick put together pizza dough from Carol Field's Italian Baker. Bryn was babysitting and I knew I had at least an hour before she was heading home.
I had great gouda, smoked gouda and parmesan. I brushed the pizza dough with my own secret ingredient, which I share with you now: Anchovy pasted diluted with extra-virgin olive oil then brushed all over before topping. The sauce I had was actually just top-quality tomato paste (the kind in the tube; I love that). I added the cheese and the onions, baked the first pizza and then sprinkled fresh basil on it when it was done.
A word about the onions. Since I had to have Julia's Boeuf Bourguignon after seeing Julie/Julia, I also had some of the slowly braised pearl onions she has you add to the stew (page 483 of MtAoFC): saute pearl onions in butter and oil. Top with beef stock or red wine (or water), some salt, parsley, thyme and bay leaf, and cook slowly until liquid evaporates, shaking pan now and then. Mmm. Like candy, I kid you not.
Anyway, so we had the pizza (Bryn loved loved LOVED the onions and the fact that the basil went on after baking), and then I did a little focaccia (that's it in the first photo)--no sauce, the olive oil/anchovy mix, a touch of fresh rosemary (chopped), the onions, a bit of parmesan, sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
And the verdict is? Yes, you CAN live by bread alone, especially if it's this focaccia.
Barb's Onion Rosemary Focaccia
Dough for 1 pizza crust
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil mixed with 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
Caramelized onions (Julia Child's Brown Braised pearl onions work well)
2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
Freshly grated black pepper
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
Roll dough out. Brush with olive oil. Top with onions, rosemary, salt, pepper and cheese. Bake until golden brown. Eat warm (or cold for breakfast the next day. That works, too).