Our Most Popular Pizza Of The Night
Saturday we celebrated my birthday by inviting a bunch of good friends over to make pizza in our new outdoor wood-burning oven. Everyone was asked to bring his or her favorite topping while we supplied the pizza dough, sauces and cheese. In total, I must have cooked over 24 pizzas before we were done.
Everyone got creative and came up with some interesting combinations. We tried artichokes, anchovies, pepperoni, pineapple, sausage, prosciutto (Italian ham), an assortment of olives, peppers, mushrooms, fresh tomatoes, sun dried tomatoes and I’m sure I’m forgetting some.
For cheese we tried mozzarella, goat, pecorino, Parmesan and fresh buffalo mozzarella. There was tomato sauce, pesto sauce, garlic and olive oil. Each pie was unique and a delight to sample.
The wood-burning oven ranges from 700°F to 800°F when cooking pizza. The pies are thin crusted and only about 8 inches in diameter so they cook fast, about 3 to 4 minutes per pie.
Unfortunately it was about 95 outside on Saturday so standing in front of the oven for over 2 hours was a test of endurance. I’m reminded how uncomfortable it must be for professional chefs working in a hot kitchen 8 to 10 hours per day. I was fortunate to have an ice bucket filled with beer next to me so I could grab ice to cool off and replenish my liquids.
There are so many great pizza recipes but I wanted to share with you this one from Wolfgang Puck’s cookbook, Pizza, Pasta, and More! I am a big fan of Chef Puck and find his recipes easy to follow, to the point and most enjoyable. Here is his recipe for Prosciutto and Goat Cheese Pizza.