there was a little birthday gathering at my house last night for one of my very closest friends. after considering a pasta dish that i’ve been dying to make (happening late next week due to a special order ingredient), i decided to do pizzas - with skewered tiger shrimp and spicy chorizo to kick it all off, and homemade blueberry cake and ‘sweet cream’ ice cream to wind it all down. there was also going to be my simple but perfect toss of romaine, walnut oil, garlic and guerende salt – but quite honestly by the time i went to throw it together, no one cared. i mean, i did ask. but everyone was too busy jamming crusty hot triangles of melty cheesy goodness into their mouths to think about anything like salad. so we sat in my kitchen with no less than 3 ovens set to 500+ degrees on a very balmy hot july night, the a/c barely able to penetrate the heat – and we ate pizza – 3 ways.
yukon gold potato, pancetta and taleggio
(with parmigiano, rosemary and thyme)
gorgonzola, pear and arugula
(with parmigiano and cracked black pepper)
fresh mozzarella, heirloom tomato and basil leaves
(with – parmigiano…)
pre pancetta and parmigiano
this pancetta? eaten raw it is equally sublime… go lardo.
gorgonzola and pear – pre-arugula
just absolutely excellent…
it’s total pizza porn, i know…
the inspiration and the recipe source for the ‘potato taleggio pancetta’ pizza came from ‘dolce & nutella‘. i love this blog. LOVE this blog. it’s smart – and beautiful on many levels and i think she’s a wonderful writer. there’s even a 4 part series on gelataria’s in rome (start here) - which is certainly the most definitive, if not exhaustive piece on the subject.
the pancetta was a generous gift from ‘on the kitchen steps‘. this blogger has threatened to salt, cure and smoke his way through ruhlman’s ‘charcuterie‘, and the recipe came straight from those hallowed pages. the final product was, as one might expect – excellent. it did the pizza proud.
the starter of the evening, the colossal tiger shrimp (whole foods – 15 shrimp for $35 – and actually worth the money) were meaty and flavorful, skewered alongside some very good chorizo. the idea for this wonderful combo was brought to my attention by kalofagas. i didn’t skewer them all nestled together and cozy like he did (rush rush) but damn, they were good.
now, i know what you’re all wanting to ask me. and i absolutely refuse to have any serious guilt over not making my own pizza dough, especially since i can make a pretty fine version that’s been meticulously researched and honed over the years. but since you are relentlessly insisting on full disclosure, i bought my dough in a refrigerated baggy from PUBLIX. ok? are you happy? dear readers, i am only one woman. and i had shopping to do, a cake to bake and prep work and well, i don’t get started until at least 11 am most mornings. so something had to give. and it was the dough. which was a solid B.
but – the pizza dough used for the margarita pie was made by my friend, brad. his wife joanna brought some over from their freezer stash and it was quite good. i think. because that pizza was the last from the oven. and by then a few bottles of wine had been downed and i had eaten my way past the point of diminishing returns – with dessert on the horizon. still, brad’s a fine cook so i trust that his dough was far superior to the supermarket version… or was it?
happy birthday rick.
i absolutely adore you both in and out of the kitchen…