Showing posts with label pizza. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pizza. Show all posts

Monday, September 5, 2016

2 Different Recipes for Stuffed Focaccia

Happy Labor Day to all of my American friends! I hope you are enjoying your long weekend whether it be relaxing, laboring or partying, the important thing is that you are well! 

This weekend we had guests over for dinner and since it's still really warm out I thought it would be nice to have dinner out on the patio. I made two different types of stuffed focaccia because they are always a big hit and even if they get left over they are great to have for lunch the following day. Today I'll share my recipe for spinach and ricotta stuffed focaccia as well as prosciutto and smoked mozzarella focaccia. Making stuffed focaccia is not really that difficult. It just takes time to make the dough beforehand and let it rise.  We had dinner at 8:00pm so I started making the dough at around 5:30.  

For the dough, here is the list of ingredients you will need: 

 - 500 grams of bread flour
 - one packet of active yeast (25gr)
 - 250 - 300 ml of lukewarm water
 - 3 tablespoons of olive oil
 - 1 tablespoon of salt 

You can either knead the dough yourself or let the mixer do the work for you. I did the kneading myself and left to rise in a sealed container for about 2 hours. If the dough seems too dry go ahead and add a little more water until smooth and elastic.  

After the 2 hours it more than doubled in size and looked great!  This is enough dough to make 2 large stuffed pies so if making just one, use half - doses. 

Now we are ready to make the focaccia. I started with the spinach and ricotta. Cook and drain your spinach (500 grams) making sure to really remove most of the water or else you will get a soggy focaccia bueno! Preheat the oven to 220°C or 430°F.

Add about 2 cups of ricotta cheese, one cup of Parmesan, a pinch of salt, pepper and a sprinkle of nutmeg. 

Mix everything well and roll out the base of your focaccia (about 2 fist fulls of dough).  Place the base on a greased baking dish and coat the dough with a drizzle of olive oil.  

Add your spinach filling on top of the dough making sure to leave some space on the sides where you will be sealing the focaccia closed with the top section. 

I added a couple small mozzarella balls cut in half before closing. Now add the top section of the dough, cover and seal the edges. Coat the top with a drizzle of olive oil and poke lightly as shown below. Bake in a preheated oven for 20 - 25 minutes or until golden. 

Next I moved onto the prosciutto stuffed focaccia. The procedure is the same so lay out the bottom section of the dough making sure to grease your baking pan. Add the ingredients you wish to add so in this case I added some slices of cooked prosciutto, black olives, some tomato sauce and smoked mozzarella cheese. You really can add whatever ingredients you prefer with stuffed focaccia.  Mushrooms, artichokes, or even broccoli work really well  here.

This was the smoked mozzarella I used...mmmmm. Love it! It has a really smokey flavor to it and it tastes heavenly when melted on pizza. Try it sometime as an alternative to regular mozzarella cheese. 

Then just go ahead and cover it sealing the edges. Drizzle the top with some olive oil and poke with a fork. Same cooking time applies here as well. 

Isn't it lovely?!

Then I served it nice and hot from the oven and it was just the perfect consistency. Crispy outside and warm inside. 

While you're here, would you like to see my outdoor table setting? Fall is almost here but I'm still really enjoying these last summer nights outside with candles and lanterns... so romantic don't you think?

Have a great week! 



PS - What do you think of my new design? Hope you like it as much as I do :-)

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Dishing It & Digging it Link Party #112

Foodie Friday and Everything Else

Monday, January 11, 2016

Greek Salad Pizza with Buckwheat Flour

Happy Monday everyone! This weekend I wasn't that great with sticking to my diet plan however it could have been worse :-) so all in all, I guess I'm not that upset about my food choices. Friday night I had cream of broccoli soup (without cream) and oven baked flatfish with potatoes. It was REALLY good. I could have eliminated the potatoes but oh well.... 

Saturday I was good and had left over cream of broccoli and Sunday night I decided to try making pizza using buckwheat flour. I really like buckwheat and it's a much healthier alternative to white flour. I decided to make a half cheese pizza and half I left plain because I wanted to top it with a Greek salad. It turned out really good and I debated on whether or not it was blog worthy but I think it is so here are the steps. 

You don't have to add onions to this obviously you can just add whatever toppings you prefer. I didn't have any black olives on hand or else I would have added those.... darn time I guess!

The buckwheat flour turned out better than whole wheat in my opinion. I mixed buckwheat and white flour just because I didn't have much of it. 

I used the same recipe as the one I wrote about here for whole wheat pizza I just substituted buckwheat with the whole wheat for this recipe. I let the dough rise for about 2 hours.  I LOVE the container that my friend Alessandra gave me for rising dough! It works like a charm every time! Grazie Ale!!

I then proceeded to stretch out the dough and let it sit out for the time it took me to preheat the oven. I coated the top with olive oil and half the pizza with tomato sauce. 

I put the pizza in the oven for the first 5 minutes then took it out and added the mozzarella cheese to half the pie and cooked for another 5 minutes at max heat. 

In the mean time I prepared the mixed salad I had and tossed with olive oil, apple cider vinegar and some salt and onions and left the feta cheese to the side for the final topping.

Once the pizza was done I added the salad to the other half of the pie and covered with feta cheese.  YUM YUM YUM - That is all I have to say about that! 

Have a great week friends!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Whole Wheat Brussels Sprouts Pizza

I'm a very big fan of Brussels sprouts. They are my new food obsession. I think they are delicious and nutritious at the same time and I particularly like them roasted with Parmesan cheese sprinkled on top. I also love anything whole wheat so on Sunday night I decided I would try making a whole wheat pizza with roasted Brussels Sprouts on top. I got the side eye from my hunny when I was making it in the kitchen but he ate it anyways...and enjoyed it I must say, because he ate three slices of it so in my opinion an empty plate means he liked it. This is a winner recipe in my book. 

Here is the recipe for the whole wheat crust. After making the dough it's easy as cake to put together. 

Ingredients for whole wheat pizza:

 - 300 grams of whole wheat flour
 - 200 grams of bread flour
 - 15 grams of activated yeast
 - 30 ml high quality extra virgin olive oil
 - 280 ml of lukewarm water
 - teaspoon of salt

In a bowl mix the two flours and salt.

In a separate cup dissolve the yeast in the water and add the olive oil. 

Once mixed well, add to the flour and begin kneading. I kneaded this myself, but if you prefer you can use a dough mixer. 

Now knead everything for at least 10 minutes until the dough forms a nice elastic ball. If you need to add more flour because the mixture is too sticky go ahead and add a little at a time until you reach the right consistancy.

Place in a large bowl and cover. Place the bowl in a room temperature area away from drafts. I like to let my dough rise in the oven with only the light turned on. Let this sit for about 2 hours until it doubles in size. 

Now you can spread it out on to a baking sheet with lightly oiled parchment paper. 

Let this sit for the time it takes you to make the Brussels sprouts. Begin by cleaning your sprouts and cutting them in half. Remove any yellow leaves and wash well. 

Coat in olive oil add a pinch of salt and pepper and abundant Parmesan cheese and roast in the oven for about 15 minutes. You don't want them to cook all the way through because they will complete the cooking time on top of the pizza. 

This is how they should look after about 15 minutes. Now spread them out evenly on top of your pizza dough. Make sure to lightly oil the dough first. These are about 500 grams of Brussels sprouts. I could have easily added another 200 grams but they sufficed. Add another sprinkle of Parmesan and bake at 250° Celsius for about 10 minutes or until the pizza crust browns. 

Here is the finished pizza :-)

It was sooo good! I want to make another one like right now it was that good :-)

Who said pizza had to be bad for you?

Hope you enjoy the recipe as much as I did :-)

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Baby Spinach and Arugula Pesto Pizza

The recent news on red meat causing cancer has been scaring the bejesus out of us lately so we have carefully looked at the amount of red meat that goes on our dinner table in the evenings. We don't eat a lot even though maybe twice a week we'll have fillet mignon which we love marinated but other than that it's usually chicken or turkey breast. My sweetheart does however love his prosciutto so we are eventually going to have to get rid of that habit as well.

I also love to put ground beef in my pasta recipes like lasagna or bolognese sauce but I mean, these really aren't huge quantities of meat we're talking here. We do however know that we should be eating more veggies so in an effort to increase our veggies in an appetizing way, I thought I'd try adding some baby spinach and arugula on my pizza.

I made the dough in the same way as my first pizza post so you can find my dough recipe here.

When the dough was ready I stretched it out onto a baking sheet and if you find it difficult to stretch it out, just be patient with it and use your finger tips to gently press it out. Leave it sit for a bit (maybe 2 minutes) and stretch it out some more. It takes a little bit of patience, but I promise it will stay put eventually! LOL.

I layered a good amount of pesto sauce on the pizza like so...

And baked it in the oven for about 10 minutes. I then removed the pizza and placed some mozzarella cheese on top and put it back into the oven for another 5 minutes or until the crust starts to brown.
Now you can prepare your spinach and arugula. I used a mixed green salad which included spinach and arugula as well as Valerian greens (which I can't get enough of by the way)! I washed the mixed salad well and tossed it with some olive oil and freshly shredded Parmesan cheese, not thinly grated as you would put over pasta but shredded thick. Add some salt to your liking to the mix.
I placed it on top of the pizza and served it. I loved this because it was very filling and if you like mixed salads you're sure to love this. I hope you'll try it out and let me know.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015


So I don't know if you've noticed but my blog is called Amore, Pasta and Pizza and I have yet to post a pizza recipe. I did post a stuffed pizza recipe though so that counts for something, right?

Well, wait no longer my friends because today is the day I post not one but TWO pizza recipes :-)

Thank you thank you...
I've never mentioned this before but I live near a city in Italy where the original pizza was born. Yes, the place where the pizza is the best pizza in all of Italy and all of Europe and all the World! Naples.
The pizza was invented in Naples, Italy in the late 18th century. The world's first pizzeria dates back to 1738 and is called Antica Pizzeria Port'Alba. They are still open and make pizza to this day.

Legend has it that the Pizza Margherita (plain cheese pizza) was invented in 1889 when the Royal Palace of Naples commissioned a Neapolitan pizza maker whose name was Raffaele Esposito to create a pizza in honor of Queen Margherita who was visiting Naples. She was queen consort of the Kingdom of Italy at the time. 

The pizza maker created three different types of pizzas for the Queen's visit. Apparently this queen never smiled and was rather surly but when she tasted the Pizza Margherita which was made with the colors of the Italian flag (red tomato, green basil and white mozzarella) the grouchy queen smiled for the first time and the Pizza Margherita was born :-) Isn't that a lovely story?

Queen Margherita
A good pizza is not easy to make at home unfortunately. It takes patience, time and a good oven! The oven has to be set at the highest temperature possible. The best pizzerias will always have a wood burning oven and the dough is left to rise for many many hours. In fact a pizzaiolo (pizza maker) is a highly qualified profession here in Italy that is fundamental to any reputable Italian pizzeria.

I know this because I went to a pizzaria in Naples once with a friend of mine and the pizzeria actually was sending customers away becasue the pizzaiolo had quit earlier that day. I thought that was really strange for some reason because there was no one that could fill in for him. Like you would think they would have another pizzaiolo, right? Well they didn't...and we were left with no pizza. Boo.

Nonetheless, I made pizza this weekend and it turned out pretty darn good if I may say so myself! I made a pizza margherita and a spinach ricotta pizza. So the dough, as I'm sure you already know, is the trickiest part. For starters you need a good quality bread flour. Here are the ingredients for the pizza dough. It makes for 2 large pizzas:

 - 500 grams of bread flour
 - 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
 - 10 grams of activated yeast
 - 270 grams of room temperature water
 - 2 teaspoons of salt

As my friend Alessandra says, it's difficult to give the correct dosage for the flour because you have to see how much flour the dough will take. Or better, if the dough is not detaching from the sides of the bowl, it needs more flour so you should add a little more and a little more until you see the dough detach and form a ball. I used 500 grams but I ended up using a bit more for it to reach the right consistancy. The salt is added towards the end of the kneading because if added in the beginning it will interfere with the yeast activity and not allow the dough to rise as it should.

Begin mixing the water, yeast and oil and preheat your oven at the max temperature.

Add the flour a little at a time and begin mixing.

Add more flour and now add the salt.  Keep mixing.

Once the dough looks like this and has detached from the sides of the bowl it is done. It takes a while for it to get to this stage. I let my dough knead for a good 20 minutes.

Now divide it into two parts and put each ball into its own bowl like so:

Cover the bowls with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for at least 2 hours. Honestly I only let mine rise for 1 and 1/2 hours becasue it was getting late but this is what it looked like. I'm sure it would have risen more if I left it longer.

I then stretched it out on a baking sheet with parchement paper that I stained with a drizzle of olive oil.

I let that sit for the time it took me to prepare the spinach so about 10 minutes. I heated a bag of frozen spinach in a pan with some melted butter and added about half a cup of ricotta cheese some salt and pepper.

I placed it on the dough and put it in the oven on high for about 5 - 7 minutes.

I did the same with the cheese pizza placing only the sauce and the basil leaf on the pizza for the first 5 - 7 minutes. The mozzarella cheese goes on later.

I cooked one pizza at a time. After the first 5 minutes remove the pizza and add the mozzarella cheese. I used fresh buffalo mozzarella which is OUTSTANDING but is only found in Naples (sorry guys...dream crusher) but regular mozzarella works just as well.

So add the mozzarella and put back in the oven for another 5 minutes or until you see the crust brown.

I know isn't it a beaut Clark :-)
Here's another one
And now the spinach pizza
I didn't have a lot of mozzarella left over for the spinach pizza unfortunately but I made it work.
And just 'cause I think this guy's a cutie...

Thanks for reading my friends xoxo