May 31, 2014

White Pizza with Green Onions and Bacon

Friends, it's been a long time, but I do have legitimate excuses.
Life has totally happened without me realizing it. A year and a half after my last post, we are in an actual grown-up house with a dining room and a garden and everything. The move happened in June of last year, right after our first wedding anniversary.
Most importantly, the day after we moved, as we were finally able to rest in our new family room, we found out we were expecting a baby.
Don't even get me started on how I could barely step foot in my kitchen while I was pregnant. And I will try not to admit just how many salt-laden TV dinners I ate miserably (and sometimes two at a time) in the refuge of our upstairs family room. I had just about every "normal" symptom in the book, all of which I have completely forgotten about as we tackle life as new parents of our now 3-month-old.
So I thought I would re-calibrate and start fresh. Spring of 2014. New kitchen, new life, and new grill on our grown-up porch. Extra weight and barely exercising, but truly cherubic baby son to show for it all.
I learned how to grill pizza earlier this week, with a ball of whole wheat pizza dough and leftover barbecue chicken. Now I'm not sure I can go back to cooking pizza in the oven. The grill gets hotter and cooks the crust crispier than even the hottest oven. The pizza was done in less time and was more delicious and flavorful than any oven pizza I've created. That said, these cheese and bacon flavors cannot go wrong in the oven or on the grill.
By the way is a white pizza by definition vegetarian? I have no idea. I just have this delicious pizza recipe to share, and it has bacon.
White Pizza with Green Onions and Bacon
Serves 4 normal people (or 2 very hungry people)
Pizza dough (I get mine from Harris Teeter but any fresh pizza dough will work)
Olive oil
Coarse sea salt
6 strips bacon
4 oz. fresh mozzarella
1/3 c. ricotta
1/4 c. green onions, sliced
1/4 c. Pecorino Romano
Preheat grill to 500 degrees, or medium-high. Brush with olive oil.
Bake bacon on foil-lined baking sheet in 350-degree oven until crisp, about 15-20 minutes. Transfer slices to a plate with paper towels and blot very dry.
Prepare pizza toppings. Slice mozzarella thinly and pat very dry. Crumble bacon into bite-sized pieces. Transfer cheeses and green onion to easy-access bowls for quickly dressing the pizza.
Roll pizza dough to desired size, about 8" square. Sprinkle flour generously on both sides and transfer to floured wooden cutting board or pizza peel. Brush top side with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.
Slide dough carefully onto hot grill and cook with grill top down for about 5 minutes.
Using a pizza peel or large spatula, flip dough and brush top with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.
Quickly assemble slices of mozzarella, green onions, bacon, and ricotta by even spoonfuls. Sprinkle all over with Pecorino Romano cheese.
Close lid and grill for 7-8 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly and light brown, and crust is brown and toasty.
We grilled 2 of these at a time and sliced each into 8 pieces. Both pizzas were weirdly shaped because the dough stuck a bit to the pizza peel and I ended up flopping the dough on the grill with my hands.
I'll take a misshapen grilled pizza with bacon any day of the week. 

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