Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Flatbread Pizza----Oh Yeah!

We were strolling through the aisles at Trader Joe's trying to decide what we wanted for dinner tonite when we stumbled upon Ciabatta Flatbreads shaped like a pizza.  It was covered with a sprinkling of herbs and had dimples in it similar to Focaccia  Curious, I quickly looked at the ingredients list and there were no preservatives and it is recommended that you refrigerate it if not used by the date on the outside of the package. 

So at home I pulled together some ingredients:
Sweet Italian sausages (2 links)
1 red bell pepper
1/2 red onion
1 clove of garlic
1/2 teaspoon crushed red peppers
Kosher Salt
Ground Black Pepper
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Chunky Slices of Mozzarella
Shaving of Pecorino Romano
Trader Joe's Jarred Pizza Sauce (I know coulda made my own, but after a wonderful day at the beach, easy peasy, was the priority)

So I made a quick version of sausage and peppers, browning the sausage bulk style with veggies and adding chiffonade of basil.  Brushed the flatbread with EVOO and then spread thin layer of pizza sauce; topped with the sausage & peppers mixture; dotted with chunks of mozzarella and a nice shaving of Pecorino.  I slid the pizza onto the pizza stone in a 425ยบ oven, then I switched the oven to Convection Roast.  The stone crisps the flatbread like a pizza crust and the convection circulates the heat over the toppings melting the cheese and heating them properly.  After 8 minutes I turn off the oven and let the pizza rest for 2 more minutes on the stone.  Pull it from the oven and sprinkle with more basil chiffonade and serve! YUM!  We have a winner!  So great for an easy meal accompanied by a salad.  While I love traditional Pizza dough, I'm always challenged by the handling of the dough and get frustrated that my shapes are more than rustic!!

Can't wait to try the next version!  Hope the leftovers heat nicely!

Finished Pizza:


Chef Jim said...

Hey Jim. I have been doing the same thing with Naan Bread. Like you, since it's already cooked you can't bake it long, but long enough to melt the cheese. I've really been enjoying them. To me, the best 'home' pizza ever! And the Naan is just the right size for one. Try them, I think you'll agree!

Chef Jim said...

The previous comment was sent to me from my sister via email, was trying to post it but ended up on my name! Anyway, D---- I've used the Naan many times, including for goat cheese and fresh figs on the grill in Rhode Island--triple yum. I love Naan anyway, they are great and close to what I used to eat in India! But as you know, two minutes too long and you got yourself some serious char!! Not always a bad thing. A new method would be to heat the oven to very hot put the Naan "pizza" in, turn the oven off and turn on the broiler to cook/melt the toppings the residual heat will toast the Naan perfectly! Enjoy!