Summer Pizza!

21 Jul

I know it’s been a hot second since my last post, but I was saving it up for when my guest post went live over at the Sex Pos Photo Project. I talk about my changing relationship with food, and there are some super silly photos of me eating. Check it out! My guest blog is safe for work, but the ads on the site, and some of the other entries, may not be safe for where you work. Thanks to Shilo for taking such rad photos, and for asking me to guest blog!

Entering and Open and Honest Relationship with Food

I’m featuring Shilo’s fab photos on this entry, too! So get ready for some sexy photos of my delicious Summer Pizza taken by the talented Shilo McCabe!

I’m a feeder. I get a lot of pleasure from feeding my friends, family and lovers. I’m 90% more likely to cook a big, delicious, healthy meal if I’m cooking it FOR some one instead of just for myself. And that’s how this pizza came to be. My sweetheart was coming over, and I wanted to cook something delicious for us to enjoy together. And I had a shit ton of veggies from the CSA box that needed cooking.

I found a pizza crust recipe in the Moosewood Restaurant: New Classics book that didn’t seem to require a lot of rising time (which is the #1 reason I don’t cook with yeast- I don’t have the patience to let those little fuckers rise). It also had some topping suggestions that went well with the veggie options I had: zucchini, onion, tomato, potato and basil.

I’ll break this recipe down into two sections: crust and topping. Start the crust WELL BEFORE you start the topping. Like 2 hours before. Read it all, after the jump!


1 package  (or tablespoon) active dry yeast

1 teaspoon sugar

1 and 1/3 cups warm water

3 cups unbleached white flour

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper (I added about 2 teaspoons of pepper because I LOVE IT)

3 teaspoons olive oil


Stir the yeast, sugar and water together and let it sit for about 10 minutes, or until it bubbles and foams. I want to put it out there, for the record, that cooking with yeast kinda freaks me out. You’re essentially taking advantage of the farting of these little beasties. SO WEIRD. Anyways…

Stir in the flours, salt, pepper and 2 teaspoons of the olive oil. Mix well, adding more flour if you need to so the dough doesn’t stick to everything. Knead the dough on a floured surface-Kneading is just folding the dough over on itself and pressing it down until it’s flat. Over. And Over. And over again. It’s exhausting. And you have to do it for about 10 minutes. GOOD FOOD DOES NOT COME WITHOUT SOME SUFFERING.

Place your kneaded dough in a bowl that has a light coating of olive oil. Cover it with a dish towel and leave it in a warm place until it’s doubled in size (40-60 minutes).This is a good time to start prepping your toppings.

After it’s risen (kinda like Christ, but more delicious), PUNCH IT DOWN. Tell that uppity dough who’s boss! And then knead it for another couple of minutes to regain its trust. Add more flour if it gets sticky. This recipe makes enough dough for two smaller crusts, or for one GIANT CRUST. If you want to make two pizzas, then split the dough. You can freeze half of it for later use.

With your hands (or a rolling pin) shape the dough into the size, thickness and shape you want it. In my case, I shaped it into the size of the giant rectangular cookie sheet that I cooked the pizza on:

Place your carefully shaped dough on the lightly oiled surface you’ll be cooking it on. Let it rise for about 15 minutes. This is a great time to finish cooking your toppings! Which I will now tell you about!


I’ll admit that I didn’t actually write down my process for this part, because I wasn’t initially planning on covering this particular dish until I saw all the rad photos that Shilo took. So I’m guessing. But you could really put whatever the fuck you want to on this pizza. As long as it’s organic, local and in-season. Cuz you don’t wanna be a jerk.

2-4 zucchini/summer squash, chopped (it all depends on how big the squash are, and how much you like them)

2 tomatoes, chopped

1 large onion, chopped (finely!)

1 bunch of basil, chopped

6-8 new (baby!) potatoes, chopped

1-2 teaspoons oregano

1 teaspoon salt

1-2 teaspoons pepper

2 cups of cheese, grated (I used queso fresco, which was easily accessible in my predominately Latino neighborhood, but rather disappointing as a pizza topping. I’d recommend a cup of parmesan and a cup of mozzarella. Add more if you’re feeling particularly cheesy).


Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

While you’re waiting for your crust to rise the first time around, chop all the veggies. After the crust is done rising and you’ve punched it and re-kneaded it, start cooking your toppings.

Saute the onions, oregano, salt and pepper in a pan with some olive oil. Cook the onions until they’re translucent. Add the potatoes and a little water, and cover and let cook for a bit. This would be a great time to shape your dough, although make sure to stir the potatoes and onions a couple of times while it all cooks (5ish minutes?).

Add the squash and cook everything for about 5-7 minutes more, with the lid off. Stir regularly. Add the tomatoes and cook for another 3-4 minutes, still stirring to make sure nothing sticks to the bottom. Add the basil and cook for another minute or two. The point of all this adding and stirring is to start the cooking process and get all the ingredients mixed together. It’s not very scientific, I know. But what about my cooking is? There will be a lot of moisture in the pan from the tomatoes. To make sure you don’t get soggy dough, pour the excess water out into a bowl. And then try drinking it cuz it’ll be like instant tomato bisque. Really, it was delish.

Spread the toppings out evenly onto your shaped dough. Sprinkle the cheese out evenly on top of the toppings.

Throw it all in the oven, and cook for about 30 minutes. Let it cool off so you don’t burn your tounge, and then…



One Response to “Summer Pizza!”

  1. Alyssa July 31, 2011 at 5:42 pm #

    That looks delicious. WANT.

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