Pie in the Sky
Today I was convinced technology hated me.
It took me the longest time to upload pictures because my computer was not cooperating.
There was even a point a time where I thought I wasn’t going to get this post up at all.
That all of my hard work in the kitchen had gone to waste.
So I stepped away from the computer, had a glass of wine, ate dinner and took my mind off of technology by catching up on celebrity gossip.
When I felt somewhat calm again, I returned to my computer and attempted to upload my pictures one last time.
And wouldn’t you know it. It worked. 🙂
I cooked up a storm today in my kitchen. I made a ton of things that I’m hoping to blog about in the next coming weeks.
One of the projects I was most excited to make was homemade pizza!
That meant dough from scratch!
I used this recipe as guidance, since it was my first time making the dough. Better safe than sorry right?
So first I dissolved one packet of active dry yeast into 1 1/2 cups warm water.
Then in a separate bowl I mixed together 5 cups all purpose flour and 1 1/2 tsp. salt.
Once mixed, I added the yeast/water mixture to the flour and salt.
I mixed it together until it formed a soft dough ball.
If you follow the recipe above exactly, you’ll need to add a little more water, as the dough is a bit dry. No biggie though, just add water one spoonful at a time until it comes together.
I floured my countertop and kneaded the dough for about 1o minutes.
Man it’s been awhile since I’ve kneaded dough. It’s a workout in itself!
Once the dough was smooth, I oiled a large bowl, put the dough in it and covered it loosely with a damp dish towel.
I stuck it in my oven [that was turned off] for about 2 hours, until it doubled in size.
Woohoo it grew!
I was a little excited at this point. That means I did something right.
I took the bowl out of the oven and punched the down in the center to deflate it. <–That was fun too
Then I transferred the deflated dough onto the countertop and cut it into three pieces.
I formed each piece into a ball and put them in their own [oiled] bowls.
I covered them loosely with plastic wrap and put them back in the oven to rest for another hour or so.
Then I wrapped them individually in plastic wrap. I froze two of them and put the other one in the fridge for later.
Since the oven was now free, I figured I’d get started on some pizza toppings!
I sliced and roasted some butternut squash and potato.
I just seasoned them with olive oil, salt and pepper.
I cooked them in a 375 degree oven F until they were tender and took them out to cool.
Once it was close to dinner time, I took out the pizza dough from the fridge and let it come to room temperature.
Then I floured the countertop [again] and rolled out the dough.
I like a somewhat thinner crust so I rolled mine out until I was happy with the thickness and transferred it to a greased sheet pan.
I pricked a few holes in it with a fork and drizzled a little olive oil over top.
I blind baked it in a 350 degree F oven until about halfway cooked through.
I then took it out and let it cool a little.
Then it was time for the toppings!
I used this amazingly creamy ricotta cheese that I made [posting about that soon] as the base.
Then I topped it with the roasted potato, butternut squash, some caramelized red onions [had them in the fridge], Cherokee purple tomato and grated parmigiano reggiano cheese.
I baked it for another few minutes and then turned the oven to broil to really crisp and brown everything.
When it came out I sprinkled a little oregano, fresh parsley and garlic gold nuggets over top.
Then things got crazy and I drizzled some balsamic reduction over it all. Ohhh yeah.
Served with a glass of cheap, Trader Joe’s red wine and I’m a happy girl.
This is a billion times better than any frozen or delivery pizza that I’ve ever had.
Seriously between the homemade crust and ricotta cheese I was dying with how good this was.
I’ve also never had butternut squash on a pizza and you know what?
That was delicious too! It added a nice bit of sweetness.
I can’t wait for the leftovers tomorrow.
The true test of this pizza will be if it’s just as delicious cold.
Yes I’m a sucker for cold pizza.
So what did we learn today?
– When technology or other life things suck, step away from it for a little and do something else. More times than not, it will work itself out.
– Make your pizza dough. Seriously go get the flour and yeast and do it now! You’ll thank me later.
Have a good night!
P.S. Don’t forget to challenge yourself!
P.S.S. Charlotte Food Bloggers are meeting up at Chow Down Uptown Food Truck Rally on Thursday 8/18! A day before I leave on my work trip, yikes! Hope to see some of you there!