Monday, April 26, 2010

Leek & Pecorino Pizza.

[recipe & photo via Food & Wine]

Today, so far, is one of those days. Which is strange, actually, because it started off so well. This morning I proudly announced to the barista at Jittery Joes that I was making the switch from Splenda (which I can no longer deny is evil) to Raw Sugar. He was so delighted with this news that he gave me a coupon for a free cup of coffee. Then I made it to class on time. Usually I scamper in a little late, but not today, my friends. Later I had a lovely talk with my sister who turned 27 today (Happy Birthday, Alyssa!) and then ... WHAM-O! English class. Sigh. Ugh. Blech. I don't love my English class, which is really saying something. The lady who graded my paper and I clearly had a difference of opinion. So, although I have miles and piles of work to do, I believe it would be beneficial for me to talk about leeks. I think at this point in the day it really will prevent me from tearing out my eyeballs.




So, leeks. Wow, they are pretty awesome. You don't ever find them in restaurants, which is kind of weird. (At least not around here.) And prior to this weekend, I never acknowledged them either. They look like an oversized onion and I assumed they wouldn't taste much different. Wrong. They are so flavorful! They turn the brightest, prettiest shade of snappy spring green when sautéed . In fact, smelling the sweet, oniony aroma they give off is actually soothing. I feel calmer just talking about them. And the best thing is, they can really knock a pizza's socks off. I'm proud to announce that Leeks and I no longer have a difference of opinion. Now time to crank out a paper revision...



Ingredients

  1. All-purpose flour, for dusting
  2. 1 1/2 pounds pizza dough, cut into 8 pieces
  3. 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
  4. 2 large leeks, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  5. Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  6. 3/4 pound ground lamb
  7. 32 cherry tomatoes, halved
  8. 1/4 pound truffled pecorino cheese, thinly sliced

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 500°. Heat a pizza stone on the bottom of the oven for 45 minutes. (Alternatively, heat a large inverted baking sheet on the bottom rack of the oven for 5 minutes.)
  2. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out each piece of dough to a 7-inch round. Oil 3 large baking sheets and place the dough rounds on the sheets. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat 1/4 cup of the olive oil. Add the leeks, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderate heat until softened, about 8 minutes; transfer to a plate. Add the 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the skillet. Add the lamb, season with salt and pepper and cook until no pink remains, about 5 minutes.
  4. Generously flour a pizza peel. Place a dough round on the peel and brush with olive oil. Top with some of the leeks, lamb, tomatoes and pecorino cheese. Slide the dough round onto the hot stone or baking sheet and bake for about 4 minutes, until bubbling and crisp. Repeat with the remaining ingredients and serve.
* If you don't have a pizza peel or a pizza stone, you can alternatively bake each pizza on a well-greased baking sheet. Also, if you are one of those people who need pizza sauce, you can incorporate it with this recipe. You don't need much, though. Enjoy!

2 comments:

Grace said...

Yes! Potato leek soup is a favorite of mine. I'm loving your blog Annie- so glad you are back at it again! I was wondering if you ever tried baking quiche?? Quiche is wonderful because you can put just about any combination of eggs, vegetables, cheese, and meat (I've done them with and without meat) in it and never go wrong. My favorite quiche is just bacon, tomato, and onion (scallions are also great and leeks would probably be delish too now that I think about it), but I've tried it with different peppers, asparagus, ham, etc and usually just throw in whatever cheeses I have around the house and it is always so yummy.

Love, Gracie

P.S. I just can't stop daydreaming about that lavender lemonade you wrote about a while back :) I have some lavender growing in my garden and one of these days I will just have to try it

Lenore said...

Mmmm...that looks absolutely delicious!! We're lucky enough to have an abundance of leeks in the shops so I'm going to have to try this recipe. Cream of leek soup is really great too...

Happy Tuesday!

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