- Chicken sausage
- Kalamata olives
- Mozzarella cheese
- Homemade pizza sauce
- Homemade pizza dough
Most couples plan a romantic date out the first time they hire a non-family babysitter, but my husband and I opted to visit Wegmans to shop for pizza ingredients. We sampled a couple of organic cheeses and landed on an aged cheddar cheese from Sonoma Creamery in California. When you purchase such a rich cheese you don’t want to take away its intensity by adding too many toppings so the combination of white pizza sauce, broccoli, and a dash of red pepper flakes was the perfect combination. After pre-baking the dough, the cheese melted nicely at 450 degrees for 8 minutes.
Apple, bacon, and cheddar are becoming one of my most favorite pizza combinations. What’s interesting to me is that this pizza turns out different each time I make it. Check out this post from November 2011 and another from October 2012. Two different strategies make this version stand out from the others. First, my friend Sara showed me how to slice the onions super thin, making caramelizing easier. Second, rather than putting the toppings on one topping at a time we added them more randomly. This made for nice flavor distribution and nice presentation. This apple, bacon, and cheddar recipe is sweet and savory, and so delicious!
Notes: I would never have imagined making a dairy-free pizza a year ago, but since I found out my daughter has a dairy allergy I’ve adopted a completely dairy-free diet. My pizza dough doesn’t contain dairy, but if you’ve being reading my blog for long you know I love cheese. Recently, I’ve started to experiment with dairy-free cheese. Non-dairy cheese will never compare to a fresh block of soft-ripened cheese, but I’ve come to appreciate the subtle flavors in vegan cheese. However, what made this pizza special was the roasted acorn squash. Combined with chicken and apple sausage, my dairy-free autumn pizza tasted like fall.
If you’ve had a good experience with a dairy-free cheese, please let me know because I am open to suggestions.
Notes: The 31st Annual Downtown Ithaca Apple Harvest Festival inspired this pizza. I picked up some fresh apples from the friendly students at Cornell Orchards and knew I had to make a pizza. After a quick stop at GreenStar Natural Foods Market for some organic ingredients I was ready to assemble. A light spread of Annie’s Goddess Dressing helped keep the dough from drying out. My husband said the flavors of the apples, onions, cheddar cheese, and sausage were an excellent combination.
Notes: Tonight’s pizza was an experiment on two fronts. First, it was my first time making pizza in a gas oven. And second, I used vegan cheese for the first time. I pre-baked the dough on a pizza stone for five minutes at 480 degrees. Then I topped the pizza with organic veggies and vegan cheese. I was worried the crust might get too crispy before the cheese could melt, but after ten minutes the crust was ready and the cheese was bubbling. My vegan veggie pizza was delicious. I am happy with my new gas oven and plan to experiment with some other vegan pizza recipes so check back soon!
Notes: Chicken fajita pizza is one of my staples. The difference between this version and one I posted a couple years ago is that the chicken for this pizza was cooked on the grill and I used mozzarella cheese rather than cheddar cheese.