Thursday, February 13, 2014

Thin Crust Pizza with Walnut Kale Pesto

We eat more than bananas in the Monkey Kitchen. Last nights dinner of whole wheat thin crust pizza topped with walnut kale pesto, goat cheese, ham, mushrooms, and arugula was by far better than bananas, even though I really do like that fruit too. Several people have asked for the crust recipe, so I thought I would share here.

I often don't know food is picture/share worthy until after it has been consumed 

Whole Wheat Thin Crust 

- 2.5 cups whole wheat flour (you can use white flour or any combination of white and whole wheat flour if you prefer)
- 2 Tablespoons cold butter
- 1 Tablespoon yeast
- 1 cup warm water
- pinch of salt (optional)

I make this dough using my Blendtec blender. I have made it in a food processor before, but it is much harder to get a really thin crust that way for some reason. The blender seems to pulverize the flour more or something and makes it possible to roll it out thinner. With a food processor you might be able to get a thin crust with some good elbow grease.

Cut the cold butter into a few pieces and add butter and flour to blender. Pulse until combined. The flour will go from looking powdery to looking like a lightly damp sand almost. Add the yeast and water and salt if desired. Pulse until dough forms a ball.

Remove from blender and place on a lightly floured surface (I usually place on lightly floured parchment paper. I also flour my hands and lightly flour the dough top). At this point I usually divide the dough into 2 pieces to make 1 large pizza and 1 med/smaller pizza (or 2 individual size pizzas) for the little monkeys as they don't always like the "adult pizza). Roll out using a rolling pin to the desired thinness. Pierce all over the crust with a fork.

Parbake your crust at 400 degrees for approximately 3 minutes. I pulled my out of the oven as soon as I started to see bubbles forming. I bake directly on my oven rack with the parchment paper, but you can use a pizza stone, just your rack or a baking sheet if you would like (it might be less crispy though).

Remove and add your toppings of choice.

Bake pizza at 475 degrees for about 10 minutes. I honestly didn't keep track of time last night as I just sort of stood there and watched until the pizza looked brown on the edges and the cheese was all melted and bubbly.

Kale Walnut Pesto Sauce 

-1 bunch of kale
- 1/2 cup to 1 cup of basil leaves
- 1/2 cup unsalted walnuts (The recipe actually called for almonds, but we eat plenty of almonds and Big Monkey is under orders from the allergist to consume more walnuts during treatment and he's not crazy about their texture whole)
-1/4 cup olive oil
- 3 cloves of garlic 
- 1 tsp of salt (or more to taste, I accidentally put WAY more than this and it was a little too salty but still good)

Typically pesto sauce includes Parmesan cheese. This recipe called for 1/2 cup, but I left it out and didn't miss it at all. So add it if you think you need it.

Remove the center stalk from the kale leaves and place all ingredients in a food processor. Pulse until smooth.

This will make way more than you need for the pizza. So place in jar in the fridge for a few days. I plan to use mine on pasta tonight.

No comments:

Post a Comment