Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Recipe: Tuscan Kale, Caramelized Onions & Cauliflower Pizza

Tuscan Kale, Caramelized Onion and Cauliflower Pizza

Continuing my adventures through the bounty of my CSA this week, despite being bloated on glorious birria at the moment, I was feeling a bit down last night and decided to cheer myself up by trying to make some epic pizza. I used this overnight fermented dough I made the night before, ultra-amazing Italian Kale, and really great cauliflower as the base of this spring dinner pizza. Bonus points for eating it outdoors.   

1.5 C Cauliflower (about 1/3 of a head) sliced into 1/3" slices (as best as possible)
1 Bunch Tuscan Kale, chopped in to about 1" pieces, stems discarded
4-5 cloves garlic, sliced thin
1/2 C chicken stock, veggie broth or filtered water
1/4 C pine nuts, lightly toasted in a dry skillet for a couple minutes
1 tbs honey
1/2 onion, sliced thinly 
Salt and pepper
Olive Oil
Flour for dusting
1 tbs chopped fresh herbs, optional
1/4 C shaved parmesan

1) Make 1 Portion of pizza Dough from this recipe, or use your favorite recipe.

2) Preheat oven and pizza stone to about 500 degrees (hotter if your oven allows).

3) Caramelize the onions: In a skillet heat about 2 tsp olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the onions, a pinch of salt, some fresh ground pepper. Saute for a couple minutes. Add the honey, reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally until the onions are wondrously brown and caramelized, about 15-20 minutes.

4) While you're caramelizing, braise the greens: Add about 2 tsp olive oil to a pot with a lid, heat on medium heat until hot. Toss in the garlic slices and cook stirring for about 1 minute, until they smell pleasant. Add the chopped kale, a touch of salt and a few grinds of pepper. Stir everything up for a couple minutes. Add the stock/broth/water. Cover and simmer for about 10 minutes. Uncover, turn up the heat to medium-high and boil off the liquid. Dry is good in this case, since you don't want the greens to be soggy or the crust will get soggy too!

5) While you're caramelizing, braising and preheating, add about 1 tbs olive oil to a large skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Add the slices of cauliflower. Let sit on each side for a couple minutes to brown. Very lightly salt and pepper the slices. Turn the heat down to medium low and cook each side for another 5 minutes or so, until the veggies have a nice bite but are tender. (I had a tiny bit of trouble getting the right texture, so I added a few tbs of water, threw a lid on it for like 5 minutes at the end and viola, perfect). 

6) Flour the back of a baking sheet and shape your dough onto it. I can't toss to save my life, but I work the dough very slowly and repeatedly outward so that it doesn't shrink back in. Note: use less flour than you think. The only major mistake I made was that there was too much flour on the baking sheet. 

7) Spread the greens & garlic on the dough. Lay the slices of cauliflower across the greens. Scoop the onions onto and spread across the cauliflower. Sprinkle on the pine nuts. Dust with the herbs. Toss the parmesan across the top. Drizzle the whole thing with a little bit of olive oil. One hint here is that you want to use less toppings than you think. Sparse is good, so the crust will crisp up nicely. 

8) Bake on a middle rack until the edge crust is well browned and rest of the crust turns crispy. If the top is cooking too fast, move the oven rack down for the next attempt. Making good pizza crust is a complete bastard - something I've been fighting since I started cooking. Try and try again! (This step took about 12-14 minutes in my oven at 500 until the bottom crust started to firm up - but watch very closely from about minute 5 onward. Don't open the door - it lowers the temperature a LOT when you do that.)

9) I would enjoy this with a fresh French or Belgian Saison ale, a glass of prosecco, or even a glass of un-oaked chardonnay.   

I'll probably get around the the green garlic lasagna rolls next! But this turned out so well I figured I'd have to share!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing this recipe it's definitely a really good reward for my brother who got his Basset Training last week. But still work on the dough first. I'm not really the cook-type but I'd like to do something special for him.