I could live on pizza every day of the year, and sometimes I do. This past month has been a flurry of flour and yeast while I try to perfect my Italian pizza crust. Weeeeeel, that didn’t exactly happen yet, but this Greens Pizza is almost as amazing as the Greens Pizza that my friend Sandy and I have been ordering from the Lincoln Wine Bar in Mt. Vernon, Iowa…..
The wine bar has the added benefit of a true Italian made pizza oven, and a pizza chef that was trained by a true Italian pizza maker! I cannot compete with their toys and skills, but I can give it one heck of a try to duplicate that pizza at home…..
As you can see, they use way more oil than I do…..and I cooked mine too long. Can you believe it, 6 minutes was too long!!! They are also using 00 flour from Italy that has a similar texture to cake flour. Unfortunately, $18 for 5 pounds plus an additional $18 for shipping was out of my budget! So I ordered the equivalent Italian-style flour from King Arthur Flour…..
I tried out a recipe that I found online for authentic Italian pizza dough, and ended up with a sticky mess. I added more flour and kept playing with the dough, but ultimately it turned into a crunchy cracker crust. 🙁
Not only did I overwork the dough, but it stuck to the pizza peel and ripped holes in the dough. I used cornmeal in my 550 degrees oven, and set off every smoke detector in the house. Good news is, they all work! Bad news, I had to open all of the windows when it was -25 degrees outside. So from now on, I will be using parchment paper!!!!!
So, I went back to my trusty Homemade Pizza Dough recipe made with unbleached, all-purpose flour and ended up with a delicious pizza.
Place your dough on a piece of parchment paper and pat down into a circle…..
I tried tossing it up in the air, and ended up with holes all over the place. 🙁 Can you tell that I am not Italian?
Brush with olive oil and slide the parchment paper and dough onto a super hot baking stone. Make sure you preheat your oven for 1 to 2 hours before you plan on baking your pizza so it is really hot. Bake for 3 minutes, not 6 or your crust will be overcooked like the crust below….
This whole bake the crust without toppings concept definitely has a learning curve, but I am getting closer. We can learn together. 🙂
Remove from oven and spread the Basil Pesto over the top…..
Top with the freshest arugula that you can buy…..
Drizzle with high quality olive oil, season with sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, and sprinkle with finely grated Parmesan cheese…..
I am going to continue my quest for the perfect light and chewy Italian pizza crust, but the basil pesto is dead on perfect!! As I learn more tips and tricks, I will come back and share them with you.
One way or another I WILL figure out that crust, but for now, Happy St. Patrick’s Day! This is still a delicious pizza and I have been dying to share it with you. Besides, if you have never been to the Lincoln Wine bar, you will never know the difference, lol.
|Prep time||15 minutes|
|Cook time||3 minutes|
|Total time||18 minutes|
|Meal type||Main Course|
- 1/2 Batch Homemade Pizza Dough
- 1/4 cup basil pesto
- 4 Cups fresh arugula
- 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
- high quality olive oil
- sea salt & fresh ground black pepper
|Place baking stone in cold oven and heat to 550 degrees 1 to 2 hour before you are ready to cook your pizza.|
|Place pizza dough on a sheet of parchment paper. Pat down and shape pizza dough into a circle, 12 to 13-inches in diameter.|
|Lightly brush the top of pizza dough with olive oil.|
|Slide parchment paper and pizza dough onto hot baking stone.|
|Bake for 3 minutes until lightly golden brown.|
|Remove from oven and spread with basil pesto.|
|Top with arugula leaves, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper.|
|Finish pizza with finely grated Parmesan cheese, slice and serve.|
This recipe will be partying at these link parties!