July 22, 2008

What are you cooking?

After hopping off the bus home, I trotted over to our grocery store, canvas bag in hand. (Go green!) I had a short list--a friend went to NYC and inspired me after all her talk about pizza, so I decided to try my own pie. It wasn't such a hard decision to make, since it was pretty well governed by an intense craving for a fancy pizza. You know what that feels like, right?

This thin crust recipe has resulted in a not-quite-successful pizza before, but last night I tried it again. I used only AP flour (no whole wheat subs this time) and I think that truly was the trick. Might have also been the carefully heated pizza stone. Who knows? In any case, the crust was perfect this time around.

I tossed it without dropping it (big step forward in my culinary career, folks) and was even prouder that it actually stretched out over the entire stone. The topping was simple: thinly sliced organic pears, twists of prosciutto, and a handful of gorgonzola crumbles. In the oven just long enough for the crust to crisp, and voila.
To round out the main dish, I made a salad with boiled red potatoes (from last week's Greenling delivery), organic lettuce, and locally-grown red onions. My new favorite dressing recipe topped it off:
2-3 tbs EVOO
1 tbs lemon juice
small handful chopped herbs--I used oregano, rosemary, and basil
1 squirt (about 1/2 tsp) brown mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp red onion, minced
salt and pepper to taste

I like to coat the hot potatoes with about 2/3 of the dressing, then pour the potatoes over the lettuce and toss. After they're happily thrown together, I pour the rest of the dressing on. The dressing sticks very well to the potatoes, so it helps coat the lettuce without drowning it in EVOO. Also, since the potatoes are hot, be sure to use really fresh, crisp lettuce--otherwise, it will wilt right away and you won't enjoy the clash of hot/cold, soft/crisp. (In the winter, I'll try the same salad concept with a wilty green and let you know how that goes....)

Overall, a major success. We topped it off with the last of the wine from Ryan's friend, and it was the perfect compliment to the sweet-and-salty pizza! Ryan gave me lots of praise for the meal! I believe my favorite was, "I think you should send this recipe to Mark Bittman." Or better yet, "I think you've finally become a great cook." It went something like that. In any case, the words made me supremely happy and sent me right back into the kitchen to try my hand at lemon-rosemary cake.

To be continued!


Lindsey said...

haha oh Amber, your stomach must hurt from all of Ryan's comments in his 'Texas Twang.'

Hey, by the way, I have the same problems with the whole wheat sub flour as well! I made some honey wheat bread and it was sort of heavy, and then substituted the flour for some Belgian waffles and those turned out heavy as well! Poo :( Trying to be healthy and I get heavy waffles.