venison prosciutto pizza with fennel and shitakes + the egg

March 4th, 2009 · 35 Comments

so let’s talk pizza.

in the usual fashion of me watching the calories, i starved myself all day – and then began making mario batali’s pizza dough recipe. or at least the one from ’03 that i found over at food & wine. and in keeping with the magazine/website concept, the dough actually had wine as an ingredient (mario you sly fox you) – and i quite liked that idea. because i like a pizza dough with character – as in flavor and i’ve not been having the best luck finding the dough of my dreams.

mario not only uses wine in his dough, but also chooses to use cake yeast which i converted to 18 grams of active dry yeast using my trusty yeast calculator. as called for, i used mostly 00 flour, the perfect flour for pizza making insuring a crisp crust and a soft crumb. but it’s a very soft flour, making it hard to manuever the dough, so a bit of all purpose gets added – if only for insurance. judging from the above photo, the 1:6 ratio was not enough… at least for me. next time i’ll add a bit more ap flour. the pie got mangled upon being placed onto the 550 degree pizza stone. but hey, looks aren’t everything…

really the story goes something like this. chris was coming over with some of his home-cured venison prosciutto and i had one fennel bulb and a big bunch of shitakes in my fridge. for some reason i felt unsure of the vegetable combo so i called my friend laura wilson, formerly the chef at ombi restaurant and she said – pizza. and i thought to myself, why did i not think to make pizza? and then i realized it’s just that well, i don’t think of so many things…

i caramelized the fennel and shitakes in some olive oil along with about half a dozen roughly chopped garlic cloves, then chris showed up with the prosciutto (check out his december 2 post about the doe that he butchered) which got sliced and added to the top. the pie was then hit with a generous amount of fresh thyme and at the last moment i thought EGG and well, maybe i do think of things sometimes…..

sadly, the pie got folded onto itself which affected nothing but my pride. and the yoke broke too but you know, it was all really just so much more than good.

did i mention that the prosciutto was AMAZING? the smell alone was absolutely intoxicating.

meat + salt + patience = delicious. my kind of math.

a wonderful cheeseless pizza. it can be done.

just simply fabulous stuff…


Tags: mushrooms · pizza · venison and other game

35 responses so far ↓

  • 1 maggie (p&c) // Mar 4, 2009 at 1:43 pm

    oh YUM. I am all about the egg-on-pizza…had it the first time when I spent a high school summer in france, totally standard there.

    This looks fabulous…could you taste the wine in the dough?

  • 2 Sara // Mar 4, 2009 at 1:47 pm

    I’ve never heard of vension prosciutto, but it sounds divine! Your pizza looks amazing, there’s really nothing better than homemade pizza.

  • 3 The Italian Dish // Mar 4, 2009 at 1:55 pm

    Brilliant! How come I never put an egg on top of my pizza? We make homemade pizzas every Tuesday night without fail and I’m going to do that to mine next week.

  • 4 heather // Mar 4, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    this venison prosciutto – homemade or store-bought? if store-bought, where can i get this?!!!

    thanks and cheers,


  • 5 Jack // Mar 4, 2009 at 3:12 pm

    Once I was purchasing shitakes at a grocery in Middle TN. The clerk looked at the label, paused for a second and then said I sure hope those taste better than they sound! It all looks great. Ill bet the proscuitto would be super with some dried fruit like apricots or figs. Call me what you wanna, but I have a hard time going without cheese on a pizza. I know I know! It doesnt have to contain it to be pizza or good and you are counting calories and all but the banshee in me screams for buffalo mozzarella! Pizza without cheese is like a kiss without a squeeze!

  • 6 Foodie at Fifteen // Mar 4, 2009 at 4:06 pm

    Heidi at 101 cookbooks has a great pizza dough recipe that I always use. I just pop the rounds in the freezer and defrost them whenever I want some homemade pizza.

    I always want homemade pizza.

  • 7 Melissa // Mar 4, 2009 at 5:25 pm

    Great post from Chris on the deer. I’m all for it.

    And nice job! Cheeseless and everything. The shape doesn’t matter one iota.

    It kind of looks like… *squint* …a car without wheels.

  • 8 Donald // Mar 4, 2009 at 5:34 pm

    Mangled and delicious! I can live with that, u kidding me?

  • 9 Jennifer Hess // Mar 4, 2009 at 6:28 pm

    OH. MY. That is just gorgeous.

    I don’t know if we can get venison prosciutto, but we have some wild boar prosciutto in the fridge…

  • 10 Peter // Mar 4, 2009 at 6:50 pm

    I’m going to do this with the next batch of duck prosciutto as soon as it’s ready. And a DUCK EGG. Because I’m crazy.

    You’re lucky your oven goes to 550?.

  • 11 we are never full // Mar 4, 2009 at 7:36 pm

    i love that you starved yourself all day for just some lovely indulgence (which it sounds like you TOTALLY deserve!). this looks awesome and what i would do for a piece of that venison prociutto – or i mean what i WOULDN”T do…

    bring it.

  • 12 cookiecrumb // Mar 4, 2009 at 9:24 pm

    “where can I get this?”
    snork. READ the post!
    I love your streamlined, skinny slices, C.
    You can delete this if I bring too much hatey.

  • 13 Vincent // Mar 4, 2009 at 10:01 pm

    The pizza looks DELISH… and I love the add of wine in the dough. Chris’ venison prosciutto looks amazing as I bet it tastes. I remember the first time I put an egg on a pizza and Ash gagged! When it was done I topped it with lightly dressed arugula and she loved it.

    And stop starving yourself.

  • 14 Robert // Mar 4, 2009 at 10:33 pm



    Cookie is on it. Tell Chris if he holds out and hypes the Prosciutto, ultimately Heather is good for quite the barter.

  • 15 Brittany // Mar 4, 2009 at 11:51 pm

    perfectly round pizzas are highly suspect in my book.

    the egg …..LOVE the egg


  • 16 Amy at Minimally Invasive // Mar 5, 2009 at 4:31 am

    It’s 5:30am and I want this pizza. The things you do to me…

    So I went home last weekend, boarded the plane and realized Mario Batali hissownself was sitting in front of me with his son (I assume). You’ll be unsurprised to hear that I didn’t speak to him at all, but it was pretty bizarre to read about Babbo in the Continental magazine with him sitting right there. Good story. Yeah.

  • 17 democommie // Mar 5, 2009 at 4:46 am

    Some years ago, a lovely woman gave me one of those little “kitchen gnomes” with a chef’s toque and a little sign that said:

    “Sex is like pizza, even when it’s bad, it’s pretty good!”

    That pizza is like an orgy. Only prob is that for me it looks like half of a single serving!

  • 18 claudia // Mar 5, 2009 at 8:46 am

    amy amy amy… why didn’t you ask him how gwynne was???

    demo – as a woman i am shocked to hear a woman exclaim that. i’ve heard men substitute pizza for fishing and say the same thing…

    robert – that heather. but boy o boy is she one worthy chickadee!

    cookie – you’re the best and i adore you and you can write anything you want. always.

    brittany – i dream of orange flan. period.

    vincent – one day i am going to kiss you.

    we are never full – i think we need to eat togteher this may when ii am in nyc

    peter – i am lucky in oh so many ways…

    jennifer – the prosciutto in my fridge can beat up the prosciutto in your fridge

    donald – you would laid into this no problemo – of this i am quite sure…

    melissa – only you…

    foodie at fifteen – i’m telling you. come to nyc in may and i will buy you lunch somewhere cool. i gotta meet you before you become someone famous.

    jack – can i quote you???

    heather – you’re a woman who gets what she wants. just like me.

    italian dish – i wanna know what’s in your crust…

    sara – agreed – totally

    maggie – i think so, like maybe – kinda sorta. just a little je nais se pas. spelled wrong. mangled worse than the pizza. i know – pitiful…

  • 19 claudia // Mar 5, 2009 at 8:47 am

    je ne sais quoi


    i wasn’t even close…

  • 20 robin // Mar 5, 2009 at 9:17 am

    Ooo! My brother-in-law just brought home massive amounts of venison from his hunting trip – venison prosciutto (and this pizza) are so in my future!

  • 21 democommie // Mar 5, 2009 at 6:08 pm


    I think you’d have liked her. She said that “birthday” was not enough. She always went for at least a birthweek, if not a birthmonth to celebrate, mine as well as her’s.

  • 22 Lauren // Mar 5, 2009 at 6:40 pm

    looks good, but it’s calling out to me…saying “put cheese on me. please, put some cheese on me.”

  • 23 rebekka // Mar 5, 2009 at 8:39 pm

    Gosh, that last picture of the slice just looks downright APPETIZING.


  • 24 Ethel // Mar 5, 2009 at 9:02 pm

    I like your kind of math. What a great idea.
    Didn’t even bother me that it was cheese-less.
    Venison prosciutto pizza. How la di da fancy does that sound. Hey, Batali,Bastianich, Bittman and Bouley, and ok your pal Bourdain, watch out for this dish. I think it’s different and looks fab.
    Save me a slice ot two.

  • 25 Lynn // Mar 6, 2009 at 10:05 am

    You MUST have a pizza class. And I’ll be sending Linda after the last pizza debacle or she’ll send me.

    It was round. That’s about all we got right.

    Yours looks divine. And I bet Chris’ Bambi-ham rocked!

  • 26 Brittany // Mar 7, 2009 at 5:59 am

    I wish I had been home earlier so I could have just emailed you my cell phone number. That way I could have set your mind at ease.

    1. sorry for the misleading juiced orange picture. There is no juice in the recipe, but sevilles are like gold to me, so I freeze the juice of the zested ones for future pork shoulders…
    I finished juicing and thought “thats a pretty shot”. The thought of not including that protrait of lies did cross my mind.

    2. all ovens are different when it comes to custards. As you learned, after enough time spent fretting (heh) , it will eventually set.

    An added tip: I usually let my flans refrigerate overnight before serving. I hope that information isn’t too late. It’s not necessary though- it just helps the caramel sink into the custard a little better.

    I hope that helps a little…..

    ps- I will of course me on the edge of my seat, so let me know how it all turned out

  • 27 Ken Albala // Mar 7, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    Looks like a rather respectable crust to me. Sort of reminds me of a dish I had in Vicenza, a pizza with sfliatini di cavallo. Littel shreds of spiced cured horsemeat. Horse Pizza. You’ve got to love Italy. And it was delicious.


  • 28 cook eat FRET - i heart bagna cauda // Mar 9, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    […] zingerman’s ← venison prosciutto pizza with fennel and shitakes + the egg […]

  • 29 zenchef // Mar 11, 2009 at 9:31 pm

    I’ve got to get my hands on some venison proscuitto!! Damn, who knew a cheese-less pizza could be so delicious. And if you say so, i totally believe you!

  • 30 The Food Hunter // Mar 13, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    That pizza looks delicious. I love the egg and the venison. Thanks for the idea.

  • 31 chefectomy // Mar 14, 2009 at 12:28 am

    Huh?? I am IN LOVE WITH THIS on so many levels…

  • 32 Heather // Mar 15, 2009 at 12:10 pm

    I don’t know how I possibly missed this. Peter forgot to mention what else he’s gonna do with his next batch of duck prosciutto: SEND ME SOME because he fucking OWES me for all the pickles and chutney I sent him.

    Then I will make this pizza too, but will use a regular chicken egg.

  • 33 Hank // Mar 17, 2009 at 4:47 pm

    Nice concept, sorta like a Provencal pissaladiere, trading fennel for onions and venison ham for anchovies…

    Did you drop the egg on after the pizza came out of the oven? That’s what I do — heat will set the egg and make sure the yolk stays nice and runny.

  • 34 Jeff // Mar 20, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    C — Sorry I’ve been away. GREAT POST. A perfect pizza, imo. Wish I had a venison source (my Montana Mountain Man cousin gave up the hunt and I’ve been venison-less for 3 bad years. Where can one find it?) — and yes, you should have a pizza-making class. please count me in.
    My own pizzas don’t compare to yours, but personally, I agree with the no-cheese concept. Cheese is a crutch!
    Thanks, as always.

  • 35 Marc @ NoRecipes // Mar 25, 2009 at 11:17 pm

    Looks great! I love egg on pizza.

  • 36 TuturQbul // Oct 16, 2015 at 3:38 am

    Petra, nyissd az abaklot! :)))Andrea, kf6szf6nf6m fe9rj neve9ben is ;-)Katucikonyha, pizze1ra fel!!c9va, kf6szf6nf6m fe9rj neve9ben is. Bizony, az ő műve (me9g be is ve1se1rolt hozze1, e9s el is mosogatott ute1na, vagy azt me1r e9n??). Nagyon fcgyesen forgatja a fakanalat is, ha kell 😉

Leave a Comment