My kids (8 and 5) absolutely adore pizza. Not broccoli pizza. But pizza with cheese, a little red sauce (not too much) and shredded grilled chicken. This pizza dough works like a charm. The rye flour gives it a rich, nutty flavor that I absolutely love. Using the Reinhart method of slow rising in the fridge and minimal kneading means I can make it in the morning while we’re all getting ready for the day, have rise in the fridge while we’re at work and school and then voila: it’s ready to go when we return home.
The dough does need to sit out for an hour after being refrigerated, but if you pop it out of the fridge as soon as you walk in the door, it’s about ready to go when the oven is preheated and the fixin’s are ready.
Dark Rye deepens the flavor of this pizza crust. Sweet and nutty, this dough satisfies adults and children alike!
Author: Amy Wilson/StreamingGourmet
Recipe type: Bread
2 cups dark rye flour
2 cups Animo Caputo "00" flour
1 Tbsp honey
2 tsp salt
1 tsp instant yeast
2 Tbsp olive oil
1¾ - 2 cups of warm water
Combine all ingredients with the mixing paddles of your stand-up mixer. Allow to rest for 5 minutes.
Swap in dough-hook and need on a medium setting for 5 minutes. The dough will still be rather sticky.
Separate dough into two pieces and place each in an oiled freezer bag. Place the bags in the refrigerator (or in the freezer if you don't intend to use them with 48 hours). When you are ready to use the dough, remove it from the refrigerator at least 1 hour before it's time to bake it. The dough needs to come to room temperature (in the bag so that it doesn't dry out).
Roll the dough out into a large circle on a pizza pan that has been sprayed with a little nonstick cooking spray. Bake in an oven that has been preheated to 450˚F for about 5 minutes. Then add the sauce and toppings and bake for an additional 10 minutes or so.
I must admit. I am a total broccoli addict. I eat broccoli every day. Roasted. Steamed. With cheese melted over it on a potato and this way: on a white pizza. This is pretty guilt free. As long as you don’t eat half the pizza, like I sometimes do. But because low-fat ricotta stands in for most of the cheese, the calorie count on this dish is not terrible.
I was first introduced to white pizza in college outside of Philadelphia. Renato’s in Swarthmore used to make an awesome pizza with ricotta, Mozzarella, and lots of garlic. I’m pretty sure there was broccoli on that one too. So basically, I wanted to recreate that pizza here.
I’ve been eating this broccoli pizza almost once a week for about a month now, so I figured it was time to do a post.
I use freeze-dried garlic in this recipe, because it’s so much faster to just sprinkle it over the pizza, than it is to chop fresh garlic. The flavor is great. I don’t miss the fresh garlic at all. I use Litehouse brand, but you can find this other brand at Amazon:
You can make the crust yourself, as I used to do a lot (I just realized I’ve never posted by pizza dough recipe, which is weird), but lately, I’ve just been buying whole wheat pizza dough at the grocery store. Mollie Stone’s now carries Il Fornaio pizza dough in the frozen section. It tastes just like my homemade version, so I’ve been hard pressed to go to all the trouble of making it from scratch. Just make sure that you let the dough sit out long enough to come to room temperature, because if you’re not careful, you can run into the problem of having the toppings cook before the dough is ready, and then it just sticks to the pizza pan like crazy.
To help with making sure the pizza doesn’t stick, I use a nonstick, perforated pizza pan like this one available at Amazon.com (just click on it). I also spray it with a little nonstick spray:
2 heads of broccoli, chopped into florets (about 3 cups)
1 Tablespoon freeze-dried garlic
¾ cup reduced fat ricotta cheese
½ cup shredded part-skim Mozzarella cheese
Salt to taste
Preheat the oven to 500˚F
If you have purchased frozen pizza dough, make sure it thaws overnight. Then let it rest on the counter for at least 20 minutes before shaping it into a pizza.
While the pizza dough is resting on the counter, you can steam the broccoli. Put the florets in a medium saucepan with 2 cups of rapidly boiling water. Steam for 3-4 minutes. Watch carefully. When the broccoli is ready, it will be bright green still, and tendercrisp. It is better for it to be undercooked than overcooked. Remove from the heat and drain completely. Then rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process and drain again. Pour the broccoli out onto some paper towels. You don't want to transfer any water to the surface of the pizza.
When you are ready to shape the dough, put a couple of tablespoons of flour (semolina or wheat) onto a large cutting board. Coat the dough ball with the flour. Flatten the ball into a disc. Then with your fingertips, work your way around the edges, stretching it all out as you go. Put your fist in the middle of the growing circle and let the sides stretch down. Move your arm up and down to help it stretch out. Then work your fingers around the edge of the circle one more time.
Spray the pizza pan with a little nonstick cooking spray and spread the circle of dough onto the pan. With the back of a spoon, spread the ricotta evenly over the pizza. Then sprinkle with the dried garlic. Arrange the broccoli pieces over the surface evenly. Sprinkle with the Mozzarella. Season with salt.
Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes. Watch carefully. If the cheese starts to brown too quickly (before the crust has had a chance to brown), back off the heat a little bit. When the cheese and the crust are just starting to brown, remove from the oven and let cool for 2 minutes. Then slice and serve immediately.
I saw a photograph of mozzarella melted over an eggplant slice on an open-faced sandwich and it inspired me to create this recipe. It’s low-carb since there is no bread or pizza crust at all. You put the toppings right on the eggplant slice and bake. These mini-“pizzas” are super easy to make and you can do several variations in one batch.
1 large eggplant, 1/8 inch slices
Prepared spaghetti sauce
Pepperoni slices (try the low-fat Turkey variety)
Fresh mozzerella, cut into 1/8 inch slices
Shredded Parmesan cheese
Fresh basil leaves
Tomato slices or diced fresh tomato
(Any topping of your choice!)
1. Salt the eggplant slices and let them sit for 30 minutes. Press the water out of the slices into a paper towel.
2. Preheat oven to 425˚F. Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray and lay the slices on the sheet without letting them touch.
3. Top each slice with a thin layer of tomato sauce and then add toppings of your choice.
4. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until cheese is melted and gorgeous. Allow to cool for 2 minutes before transferring to plate.
The eggplant “pizzas” are not stable enough to eat with your fingers. This is definitely fork food, but it shouldn’t be totally soggy either. If your slices are coming out really soggy, then there are a few troubleshooting tips: a) Salt them really well at the beginning and try to expel as much moisture as possible. b) Put less tomato sauce on. c) Don’t bake them for too long.
When I made pizza the last time, the crust never fully baked and therefore the pizza was soggy and the dough was downright raw in the middle.
They recommended that I prebake the pizza crust just a little and they also recommended that I cook the pizza for longer than 12 minutes – more like 18 – 22 minutes in a very hot oven. I particularly liked Reeni’s advice to preheat the oven to 500˚F and then turn it back to 450˚F once I put the pizza in the oven. My oven tends to trend a little low anyway and opening the door always knocks the temperature down, so preheating a little high was a great idea.
This pizza was an almost complete failure. I say “almost,” because it actually tasted really good. The flavors mingled perfectly: tomato, mozzarella, basil, and eggplant. What could be better? The problem was that the dough would not cook all the way through and it remained so soggy, I couldn’t really pick up a piece of pizza with my hands. I ate it in forkfuls. Tasty, soggy, forkfuls.
I thought I had taken all of the necessary soggy-avoiding measures. I salted the eggplant and let it sit for 30 minutes, blotted out the moisture with a paper towel and repeated for another 30 minutes followed by more blotting.