I love pizza. And I love mushrooms. Put the two together and my love for them is synergistic (aka my love for a mushroom pizza is greater than my individual love of mushrooms and pizzas added together).
So when I saw this mushroomy mushroom pizza on Annie's Eats (one of my new favorite food blogs FYI), well, I just had to make it. And unlike most recipes on my "To Make" list, this one didn't have to sit there for long before it made it to my kitchen table. (aka: on a plate in my lap while I sat on my living room couch watching TV...)
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Salt and pepper (low on the salt)
2 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
¼ oz. dried porcini mushrooms
¼ cup very hot water
1 small shallot, roughly chopped
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves (use 1/3 the amount for dried thyme)
2 TBSP fresh arugula, or parsley leaves
2 TBSP grated Parmesan cheese
Pizza toppings (enough for a 6-8" pizza, or 1/4 of the pizza dough recipe below; double if you want to make a larger 12" pizza)
1/2 TBSP butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp minced fresh thyme
2 TBSP dry white wine, optional
1/4 of pizza dough recipe below
1/2 to 3/4 cups shredded Fontina cheese
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup aged provolone, optional
1. Prepare the mushroom pesto: Preheat the oven to 450˚ F and line a baking sheet with foil. Toss the mushrooms with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and lightly season with salt and pepper. Bake, stirring occasionally, until browned and crisp, about 15 minutes. For the last 10 minutes of baking, add the garlic cloves to the pan.
2. While the mushrooms are baking, soak the porcinis in the hot water for about 5 minutes. In the bowl of a food processor or blender (a mini processor works perfect for this), combine the roasted mushrooms, garlic, rehydrated porcinis (including the 1/4 cup water they've been soaking in), shallot, thyme, parsley, and remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil. Process until smooth, scraping down the bowl as needed. Stir in the Parmesan.
3. To make the pizza, increase the oven temperature to 500˚ F and preheat a pizza stone. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté the mushrooms until browned and tender, about 5-7 minutes. Stir in the garlic and thyme and cook just until fragrant. If using, stir in the wine and cook until almost completely evaporated. Remove from the heat.
4. Roll out the pizza dough into a 6 - 8"round. Note: either prepare your pizza on parchment paper (NOT wax paper, it'll melt at 500 degrees) that you'll transfer directly onto your pizza stone or prepare the pizza on a pizza peel with a dusting of flour and cornmeal to prevent the dough from sticking.
5. Lightly brush the perimeter of the dough with olive oil. Evenly spread the mushroom pesto over the crust (HALF if you're making the small pizza) and top with the shredded cheeses and sautéed mushrooms. Transfer the pizza to the preheated pizza stone and bake until the cheese is melted and bubbling and the crust is lightly browned, about 10-12 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before slicing and serving.
Pizza Dough, from Annie's Eats (originally from Baking Illustrated, aka Cooks Illustrated)
Yield: enough dough for 2 medium pizzas or 4 small pizzas/calzones
Note: I didn't weigh my dough (I didn't realize she had weight measurements) but this dough was super wet. I probably added close to another 1/2 cup, or maybe even more. If you need to add more dough so that it comes together but making sure it's still on the sticky side. You can always kneed in a little extra flour by hand when its time to roll out your dough.
½ cup warm water
2¼ tsp. instant yeast
4 cups (22 oz.) bread flour, plus more for dusting
1½ tsp. salt
1¼ cup water, at room temperature
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1. Measure the warm water into a 2-cup liquid measuring cup. Sprinkle the yeast over the top. Allow to sit while you prepare the rest of your ingredients.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the bread flour and salt, mixing briefly to blend. Measure the room temperature water into the measuring cup with the yeast-water mixture.
3. With the mixer on low speed, pour in the yeast-water mixture as well as the olive oil. Mix until a cohesive dough is formed. If the dough is too sticky, go ahead and add more flour, a tablespoon or two at a time. (But don't add too much!)
4. Switch to the dough hook. Knead on low speed until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, turning once to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size, 1½-2 hours.
5. Press down the dough to deflate it. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough into 2 or 4 equal pieces. Form each piece of dough into a smooth, round ball. (If freezing the dough, wrap in plastic wrap and freeze at this point.)
6. Cover with a damp cloth. Let the dough relax for at least 10 minutes but no longer than 30 minutes. To bake, preheat the oven and pizza stone to 500˚ F for at least 30 minutes. Transfer the dough to your shaping surface, lightly sprinkled with cornmeal. Shape the dough with lightly floured hands. Brush the outer edge lightly with olive oil. Top as desired. Bake until the crust is golden brown, and cheese is bubbling, 8-12 minutes.