Hello everyone! As if anyone needs a reason to eat pie, this week is PI Week! That’s right 3/14 is national pi day and most people celebrate it with a sweet fruit or custard filled pastry. Not this guy. I made pizza pies from Back to Basics. These aren’t your typical pizzas, no tomato sauce needed. These are white pizzas (white from the plethora of cheese) and topped with a lemony dressed arugula salad. These might sound fancy and difficult to make, but once you get passed the idea of making the dough, it’s completely a breeze. To be honest, pizza dough might just be the easiest thing to make and you really can’t mess it up. The most important part is to make sure the water you use for the yeast isn’t too hot. Yeast is a live organism. So it needs water and sugar to activate. The yeast gives off gas which makes the dough rise. If you use water that is boiling hot, you’ll kill the yeast and your dough will be like flat hockey pucks. I always just use warm tap water and have never had any issues with my dough rising.
Through this recipe, I’ve learned that garlic and herb infused olive oil is everything. Basically, it’s just heating olive oil
over low heat and lightly cooking some garlic, thyme (I cheated and used dried), and red pepper flakes. The oil is then perfumed with the flavors of the garlic and herbs and omg, if I were to make this again, I’d sub out the plain olive oil in the pizza dough for this just to add more flavor. I definitely think that I’ll make more to keep on hand. It’s great to fry up eggs in or really whatever you cook because it adds so much flavor.
When thinking of pairing a wine to go with this pizza, I had to go for a rose. There is nothing that screams summer more
than a chilled rose and the crisp, fruity flavors lend itself well with the flavors of pizza. I am in love with Winc’s Local Flavor Rose. Their Local Flavor brand that Winc carries donates a portion of it’s earnings to the nonprofit group, Venice Arts. They reach out to the low-income youth of LA to provide them with education in film and photography. It’s a very cool organization and the wine is top-notch. It is a mix of four different grape varaities so the flavor is very complex and has a lot of fruit flavor and crisp lemony notes which pair really well with the arugula salad on top of the pizza. If you want to give Winc a try and stock up on some great wines, sign up through my link and get a discount on your first order: https://hi.winc.com/2lhy61q4ll7.
Of course I had to make a dessert, I was really feeling it this week, why not? To keep with the Italian theme of the pizza, I decided to make Ina’s Affogato from Back to Basics. Affogato is ice cream drenched in espresso, I mean, sounds like a winner to me! I searched the local stores for plain vanilla ice cream, but seriously couldn’t find any (what’s up with that?). So I decided I’d make a creative version and use Ben & Jerry’s new flavor Urban Bourbon. It’s caramel ice cream with bourbon caramel swirls and chocolate chips in it. Sounded great to me!
For the coffee part of the recipe, I used my Nespresso to brew a pod of espresso to pour over. If you don’t have espresso, make some of your favorite coffee or if you have some left over from breakfast, reheat it and pour over. The key is that the coffee needs to be hot. It helps melt the ice cream which makes it so, so good. I added some chocolate chips on top because you can never have too much chocolate. If you want to take this to the next level, try the Telenti brand gelato. It’s fantastic and adds extra richness to the dessert. Just don’t eat this before bed because the espresso will give you a nice blast of energy for a few hours. This is definitely an early afternoon pick-me-up.
For these recipes, I recommend using the following: