Saturday, September 20, 2008

The Little Things

I've been feeling overwhelmed, and when I'm overwhelmed, everything seems to suffer. My cooking, the cleanliness of my apartment, my patience with others, my ability to find a parking space.

Sometimes it's the little things that make everything okay. Having a freshly cleaned dog who smells like pina colada, having a husband who after 3 years of marriage now spontaneously makes the bed, having a homemade loaf of Portuguese sweet bread in the freezer, getting free dough when you have a mushroom pizza craving.

I was smiling before I even started cooking it, after all, who doesn't like free dough? I was even happier when it came out every bit as delicious as I'd hoped.

adapted from Rachael Ray's Mushroom Lovers' Pizza

1 8 oz package of white mushrooms cleaned and sliced
1 8 oz package of baby bella mushrooms cleaned and sliced
1/2 a small onion, sliced very thin
.5 to .75 lbs shredded gruyere cheese
dough (you can usually buy this from your local pizza place)
1/4 C dry white wine (you can sub vermouth)
1 bay leaf
1 T fresh thyme removed from stem and chopped
1 T Worcestershire sauce (this often contains anchovies, so would make the dish not vegetarian, you can omit it, or find a vegetarian Worcestershire sauce, there are some on the market).
2-3 cloves of garlic minced
salt, pepper
4 T extra virgin olive oil
1 T butter
small amount of cornmeal for cooking the pizza.

Preheat your oven to 450F.
In a medium pan, combine the onion and 1.5 T olive oil. Cook over low heat for 20 minutes, stirring periodically. Check the heat carefully, you want to caramelize the onion, not make it crispy. It should slowly turn golden brown and the onion should taste sweet. Once that's started, in another medium pan, combine a T of olive oil, the butter, garlic, mushrooms and bay leaf. Cook over medium heat for about 12 minutes. Add the Worcestershire sauce and white wine and deglaze the pan, scraping up all the bits of stuck mushroom. Add salt and pepper, about 2 t salt should be good. Cook for another 5 minutes to cook off some of the liquid. Add the thyme.

Stretch or roll out your dough. On a large sheet pan, or pizza stone, sprinkle some cornmeal. Put the dough on the pan, and cook at 450 F for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350. Remove from oven for topping. Sprinkle gruyere over the whole pizza. Then add the mushrooms and onions. Cook for 5-10 more minutes until cheese is melty and toppings are warm.


JML said...

What a beautiful pizza! How'd you score the free dough?!

Carrietracy said...

My usual pizza place was closed for vacation. I stopped at a different one and when I asked if he'd sell me dough, he insisted on just giving it to me. It was great dough too, much easier to work with. I'll probably return to him for dough in the future and insist on paying.


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