Lately, Friday night has become Pizza Night in our household. …Vegetarian Pizza Night, to be more accurate. I make the dough, sauces, and chop up all the toppings in the afternoon, let the dough rise for a few hours; and by the time Piyush and I are ready for dinner, all I have to do is toss it in the oven and wait for it to bake.
I tend to make mostly vegetarian pizzas (there are some exceptions) because I don’t believe Piyush and I need to eat meat every single day. I also think vegetables are so vibrant and beautiful…meat would only ruin the beauty of the pizza.
This week, I got the idea to use pistachios on our pizza. I thought the green would be pretty, and the flavor would be unique.
As always, I used my typical whole wheat pizza crust recipe (you can check it out here). I did make one small change, though. Instead of normal whole wheat flour, I used Indian atta (chapati flour). Atta is also a whole wheat flour. I’m not entirely sure what the difference between atta and regular whole wheat flour is–I think it seems less course (although wikipedia says it should be more course).
What I do know, is that atta makes the dough feel different and the result is a fabulously crunchy and thin crust!
To give the pizza some nice garlic flavor, I made chili and garlic-infused olive oil; and brushed the crust with the oil before pre-baking the crust (I always bake my crust 5 minutes on a pizza stone at 450 degrees F before I put any toppings on. I think this helps keep the crust nice and crunchy).
To make the oil, I simply took a small bottle of olive oil–no need to buy anything super expensive–and poured it over a couple heads of garlic that I had sliced in half and some chilies that I had made a few slits into.
I tossed it in a oven that had been pre-heated to 300 degrees F and let the garlic and chilies roast for about an hour.
Once it had roasted for an hour, I took it out of the oven and let it cool for a bit. I then strained the oil into bottles and jars. The oil should last a couple months as long as they are stored in air-tight containers and kept in a cool, dark place.
Also…after you strain the oil, don’t throw those roasted garlic cloves away! Give them a little squeeze and you’ll have delicious, roasted garlic! Store this in a container in your refrigerator until you’re ready to use it.
…Back to the pizza! After I brushed the dough with olive oil, I cooked the crust for 5 minutes at 450 degrees. I then brushed on a little more oil; and topped the crust with shredded fontina cheese, very thin slices of purple potatoes (which I cooked in a tiny bit of oil for about a minute), pistachios and caramelized onions–cooked with a little ground clove, cardamom, cinnamon, garam masala and tumeric.
I tossed the pizza back in the oven (still heated to 450 degrees F) and let it cook for 15 more minutes. Once the crust started to brown, I took the pizza out and drizzled it with a little bit of pistachio honey. I had gotten the honey from a local shop–in a 3 dollar grab bag. It tastes good, yes…but I think you could easily substitute regular honey with a little powdered pistachio mixed in.
I also chopped up a bit of cilantro…and dinner was done!
This pizza combination was awesome! It really tasted very, very gourmet. The only (small) change I would make would be to add more caramelized onion! The sweetness that the onions added to the pizza was much needed…and absolutely mouth-watering. They also gave my pizza a little Indian flair!
I also replenished my curry base stock.
Planted my potatoes.
And started a new project.
This is a cutting board my dad gave me. My grandpa made it when he was a little boy. I’m going to sand it down, oil it up and hang it on one of the walls in my kitchen. I love my grandpa an awful lot (I hope you’re reading this, Old Man!), and I think this cutting board will be perfect in my house!
Saturday was a fun night spent with my husband, sister and niece. We went shopping. We ate Mexican food. We made a diaper cake (for Summer’s baby shower).
Cell phone pictures!!!
My niece, Madelyn, turns two next month. She’s a little ball of energy; and as cute as anything! She’s also incredibly hilarious and can make anyone laugh in about two seconds. I swear, that kid can always make me crack up!
She’s learning a lot of new words now, and has even began to call people by their names. That is…everyone except me. She calls my grandma “Judy” (where she learned to call my grandma by her first name, I’m not sure), and my sister-in-law Amanda. She even calls Piyush by his name (and pronounces it nearly perfect!); but ask her what my name is, and she will always say “Auntie Treat.”
Its true, I probably do spoil her. I give her tea biscuits and grapes when she comes to visit (ok…sometimes I give her jelly beans). I usually have some sort of toy or trinket for her to take home; and I always have “juice” (water) in fancy Dora cups.
But come on! She can say Piyush, but she can’t say Shari? Oh well. Auntie Treat isn’t so bad…right?
P.S. New Curry Recipe coming soon… Lamb with Apricots and Almonds