Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Our New Favorite Pizza

I have to say, my husband is definitely benefiting from my quest to try new things in the kitchen. He's gotten chocolate mousse (one of his favorite desserts), multiple batches of shortbread cookies, a death-by-chocolate cake (more on that later), and his new favorite pizza: flatbread pizza.

Truthfully, I've always been intimidated by the idea of making bread. A year or so ago I started making my own honey wheat pizza dough, and though it wasn't all that difficult, I remained trepidacious about bread in general. One of the reasons I was so excited to get Michael Ruhlman's book Ratio was that I wanted to be able to make bread easily, and that's exactly what I did.

Flatbread Pizza

Ratio - 10:6:1 (flour:water:oil) 

Makes 1 large flatbread pizza


  • 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 10 oz (about 2 1/2 c) bread flour  
  • 6 oz (1 1/2 c) water 
  • 1 1/2 t salt, divided
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 2 T chopped fresh herbs (optional)
Pizza Sauce
  • 1/2 pint grape or cherry tomatoes  
  • 2 oz no salt added tomato sauce
  • 1/4 t dried basil
  • 1/4 t dried oregano
  • 1/4 t salt 
  • 1 t olive oil
  • 4 T sliced olives (I love Gaeta olives, but they can be hard to find) 
  • 1/2-1 c artichoke hearts, roughly chopped 
  • 2 c four-cheese blend or mozzarella (shredded) 

Note: There are a couple of ways to get the most flavor out of the fresh herbs. If you know you're going to make the pizza ahead of time, mince the herbs and let them sit in the oil overnight. If it's a spur-of-the-moment thing, you can rub the herbs and salt together until the flavor of the herbs infuses into the salt. 
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toss tomatoes with 1 t olive oil, basil, oregano and salt. Roast for 30 minutes or until the tomatoes burst.
  2. While the tomatoes cook, add 1/4 t yeast to 6 oz water and let stand 5 minutes.
  3. While the yeast sits, combine the flour, 1/2 t salt, herbs and oil in the bowl of a stand mixer (if using one) or in a large bowl if kneading by hand. 
  4. Add the water and mix (with a paddle attachment or by hand) until the dough is formed. It will start by being very sticky but will slowly come together. 
  5. Roll out the dough on a floured surface into the shape desired. Don't be surprised if it doesn't seem very thin or very large yet. Let it rest for 10 minutes.
  6. Roll out the dough again until it reaches the desired thinness. You can put it on a nonstick sheet pan and gently stretch it out to fill the pan. Rub 1 t olive oil over the dough, sprinkle with salt.
  7. Once tomatoes are done, adjust oven temp to 400 degrees. Bake bread for 10-12 minutes until just browned and bubbled. Let sit 5 minutes to cool.
  8. While the flatbread cools, mix the roasted tomatoes with 2 oz tomato sauce (about half a small-sized can).
  9. Spread the tomato sauce over the flat bread and sprinkle toppings over the sauce.
  10. Top with with cheese and bake another 10 minutes (at 400 degrees F) until cheese has melted.
  11. Remove from oven and slice as desired. 

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