Ciao Italia: My Lifelong Food Adventures in Italy
Mary Ann's newest book contains over 150 recipes, 60 gorgeous food photos, and many scenic pictures of Italy taken by Mary Ann on her travels through the years.
Makes Two 13 to 14-Inch Pizze; Serves 12 to 16
This slightly unconventional potato-and-red-onion-topped pizza has lots of zip and tang because of the thin coating of spicy mustard over the dough. Caciocavallo cheese is a cow's milk cheese that is shaped something like a melon. It is sold in pairs, tied together with string. If it is unavailable, substitute mozzarella cheese.
2 tablespoons Filippo Berio extra-virgin olive oil, or more if necessary
2 medium red onions (1/2 pound), thinly sliced
2 teaspoons sugar
3 medium all-purpose potatoes (3/4 pound), peeled and sliced
¼ inch thick
1 recipe Straight Dough
¼ cup spicy mustard
2 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
¾ pound caciocavallo cheese, grated
Fine Sea salt to taste
Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onions and 1 teaspoon of the sugar and cook until the onions are soft, glazed, and starting to brown, 5 to 8 minutes. Remove the onions to a bowl and set aside.
Add the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 teaspoon sugar to the pan. Cook the potatoes, in batches if necessary, stirring often and adding additional olive oil if the pan is dry, until the potatoes just begin to brown. Remove the potatoes to a bowl and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Lightly spray two 13- or 14-inch pizza pans with olive oil spray and set aside.
Punch down the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface. Knead the dough for 3 to 4 minutes, until smooth and no longer sticky. Divide the dough in half. Work with one piece at a time, keeping the second piece covered with a towel or bowl.
On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to fit a pizza pan. Place the dough on one of the prepared pans and brush 2 tablespoons of the mustard evenly over the surface. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of the thyme evenly over the dough.
Arrange half the potatoes over the dough. Scatter half the onions over the potatoes. Sprinkle on half the cheese and sea salt to taste.
Repeat the process with the remaining dough and topping ingredients.
Bake the pizze for 25 to 30 minutes, until the tops are golden brown, the cheese is melted, and the bottom of the crust is crisp and evenly browned. Remove the pizze to a cutting board, and cut into wedges with scissors. Serve immediately.
Variation: Scatter a combination of black and green oil-cured olives over the pizza halfway through the baking.
This recipe is from WHAT YOU KNEAD by Mary Ann Esposito, published by William Morrow and Company, Inc., in 1997.