International Incident: Pizza

Ok, soI have a confession to make….  I have never before made my own pizza dough.  Does that make me a bad foodie?  In any case, I was delighted that, after the success of the International Bloggers’ Gnocchi Party in February, that Penny went ahead and decided to turn the party into a monthly “International Incident” with bloggers from around the world joining each other to make their own interpretations of one dish each month.  This month, our dish is pizza and my heart sank a little when I read it because it involved my nemesis – yeast…

In any case, I did a bit of research and found a Giada diLaurentis recipe on Epicurious that many reviews said was perfect for a first timer’s foray into pizza dough.  Thankfully, it was relatively painless as the past week has thrown a number of curveballs at me and then in the middle of the whole pizza making incident, I received notice that I had been chosen as one of the Mushroom Channel’s 2010 contributors!! So shall we just say, I was a little distracted throughout the whole process…

The dough making went ok, surprisingly easy, though it didn’t seem sticky enough at the time.  I was hesitant to add any more liquid to it so just let it be, overnight in the fridge…

As a topping, I was inspired by Local Lemons’ asparagus pesto, substituting pine nuts for the suggested walnuts.

Topped with chicken, basil, tomatoes and feta…

The dough was not really stretchy enough, as predicted and was a bit dry but it did ok in the oven on my new pizza stone…

And it cooked quite nicely once the toppings were on it…

About half way through cooking (at 425F for 12 minutes), I drizzles the top with some olive oil.  I was happy to see the edges browned up nicely..

As you can see the crust is a *little* thick but it was definitely tasty and I am glad it wasn’t one of those big doughy bases that mean you are eating more base than pizza topping.  I will be trying this recipe again and seeing how I can make it a bit easier to roll out thinner as I really prefer a thin crust pizza – it really was a super easy recipe and you can even make it the night before you need it.  My kinda recipe.  I am looking forward to the summer when I will be able to make pizzas without the stress of work/ grad school (and curveballs!) and Neil will be able to cook them on the BBQ!  Expect more pizzas on ELTW in the coming months!

Meanwhile, thanks to Penny for “hosting” our virtual pizza party and head on over and check out the roundup at Jeroxie – Addictive and Consuming or check out our photos on Flickr!

51 Responses to International Incident: Pizza

  1. Megan April 17, 2010 at 21:10 #

    Good job on your first pizza! We make pizza every Friday using either Mark Bittman’s or Artisan Bread’s dough recipe. It doesn’t need to be pre-cooked, and works really well.

  2. penny aka jeroxie April 17, 2010 at 21:29 #

    Awesome on your first try and glad to hear that you will be trying again soon. You have pulled through beautifully. I feel like having a piece of that now!

  3. Jessica April 17, 2010 at 22:02 #

    I guess we all conquer our firsts one day or another! You’ve never made pizza dough, but I’ve never made pesto either! I guess I will have to try my hand soon in another International Incident challenge. 🙂

  4. 5 Star Foodie April 17, 2010 at 22:03 #

    Wonderful job on your first pizza, Mardi! I love the idea of asparagus pesto and feta for the toppings!

  5. Conor @ HoldtheBeef April 17, 2010 at 22:29 #

    I LOVE your choice of toppings, and think I will have to steal them for my next pizza night at home! Excellent work for your first go – actually, excellent work for any go, it looks delicious. You’ll be teaching those little hands how to make pizzas before too long I’m sure 🙂

  6. Evelyne@CheapEthnicEatz April 17, 2010 at 22:32 #

    Great pizza. And way to go facing nemesises (??). Love the pine nuts asparagus pesto

  7. Tasty Trix April 17, 2010 at 22:39 #

    I love the rustic shape of your pizza. And see? Yeast is nothing to fear! Great pizza party pizza!!!

  8. Belinda @zomppa April 17, 2010 at 22:43 #

    Congrats on the first pizza! Asparagus is a great topping.

  9. Cherrie April 17, 2010 at 23:05 #

    You did a great job on your first pizza dough. I love the combinations of your topping.

  10. Jo @ secondhelping April 17, 2010 at 23:17 #

    That’s a great result for a first attempt at your own dough.
    The toppings sound delicious – I think I will have to try that asparagus pesto.

  11. merry jennifer April 17, 2010 at 23:19 #

    I think your pizza looks divine. I’ve made my own crust only twice, and I have purposely aimed for a thick crust pizza each time. I don’t have a pizza stone yet (it’s on order), so you’re one step ahead of me.

    Congrats – it looks like a great meal!

  12. Andrea@High/Low April 18, 2010 at 01:12 #

    Congrats on your first pizza dough! Your dish looks wonderful – I love all of the fresh ingredients! The asparagus pesto sounds like a great idea…and your pizza stone makes me want to purchase my own!

  13. Divina April 18, 2010 at 01:15 #

    Great job on your pizza and that asparagus pesto is a winner. Love rustic pizzas. I hope I could taste it right now.

  14. Christine@Christine's Recipes April 18, 2010 at 02:58 #

    Wonderful and good first try. I never ever thought of using asparagus pesto. That’s a great idea. I’m loving it !

  15. steph April 18, 2010 at 03:07 #

    Love the photo of your bubbly pizza dough!

  16. Agnes April 18, 2010 at 07:23 #

    Ooooh look how puffy your pizza got in the oven! Looks so fantastic 🙂

  17. Anh April 18, 2010 at 07:29 #

    Your first try?? it looks great!! Nothing is more rewarding than making your own pizza, so do try again! 🙂

  18. bunkycooks April 18, 2010 at 07:30 #

    Your pizza appears to have been a great success! I love the toppings…yum! I have used Giada’s recipe for pizza crust. It is a great one to start with and I thought it was quite tasty. I look forward to seeing those pizzas on the grill!

  19. Cathy at Wives with Knives April 18, 2010 at 10:41 #

    I put off making pizza for ages and once I tried it I was hooked. Your asparagus pesto looks delicious, a great idea during asparagus season. I love the toppings you’ve used and I like a thin crust too.

  20. Kitchen Butterfly April 18, 2010 at 13:07 #

    Congratulations…….it is an experience to make your own dough!!!!!!! And it looks good too

  21. Tracey@Tangled Noodle April 18, 2010 at 14:02 #

    I’ve yet to make my own traditional pizza dough, even though I’ve been vowing to (along with dozens of other ‘must-make’ foods). The puffing up of the dough is, to me, a sure sign of total tastiness. I love your use of fresh sliced tomatoes and the asparagus pesto sounds fantastic (add to list . . .)!

  22. ToKissTheCook April 18, 2010 at 17:24 #

    This combines all of my very favorite things and I’m loving the asparagus pesto idea. With you on the thin crust though- strange as an adopted daughter of Chicago but I’m in it for the toppings!

    Also- congratulations on the Mushroom Channel…I’m looking forward to working with you!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite April 20, 2010 at 08:31 #

      Thank for stopping by! I am excited about my Mushroom Channel gig too! I am sure that there will be some type of pizza involved in one of my posts….

  23. Lisa (bakebikeblog) April 18, 2010 at 22:12 #

    ooooh I do like the look of that asparagus pesto – what a great idea!!!!

  24. Celeste April 19, 2010 at 07:10 #

    Wow! Fantastic attempt at the dough especially your first time! I’ll have to try that when I do pizza next. Mmm.

  25. Cat April 19, 2010 at 21:43 #

    i’m totally intimidated by pizza crust too! it is one of my summer cooking goals to master pizza dough and get steve to master cooking them on the grill. he doesn’t know that yet . . .

  26. Rochelle (Acquired Taste) April 20, 2010 at 17:17 #

    Great looking pizza! I like the idea of the asparagus pesto too, but what really gets me is those nice slices of tomato and feta on top! I’m trying not to drool 😀

  27. Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction April 20, 2010 at 22:22 #

    Your pizza looks wonderful. I love to make homemade pizza dough… I never would have guessed that you never made it before because yours looks perfect!

  28. Casey Angelova April 21, 2010 at 04:48 #

    Congratulations on you success with the Mushroom Channel and you first pizza dough.

  29. Fuji Mama April 22, 2010 at 20:49 #

    Woot! You battled with your nemesis and you won!!!

  30. Kate at Serendipity April 24, 2010 at 11:01 #

    BRAVA to you for tackling dough. I remember the first loaf of bread I ever made–I left it in the oven to cool. When it was cool, I tried and tried to cut it, to no avail. My sister took it outside and hit a baseball with it…

    Your pizza looks delicious–asparagus pesto. Yowza!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite April 29, 2010 at 08:09 #

      Yes I have had bread that was fit to be hit with a baseball bat! And I think the asparagus pesto really made this!

  31. Jen Laceda April 25, 2010 at 07:37 #

    IT looks good…now, I want to try to make my own, too!

  32. Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite July 2, 2010 at 23:39 #

    Ok people – sorry – I am just referencing this post in a new one and noticed I never responded to early commentors!!

    Megan – I need to check out Bittman’s recipe for sure!
    Penny – you will be pleased to see I tried again!!
    Jessica – pesto is SO much easier than pizza dough!!
    5 Star – yes the toppings were wonderful!
    Conor – ironically you actually witnessed the little hands making pizzas!
    Evelyne – it will remain my nemesis!
    Trix – thanks!
    Cherrie, Belinda and Jo – yes the topping was soooo good!
    Merry Jennifer – a thick crust can be good too!
    Andrea – the pizza stone is great!
    Divina and Christine- yes the topping really made it yum!
    Steph and Agnes – I liked the pizza dough bubbling too!
    Cathy, Anh, Bunkycooks, Kitchen Butterfly – yes I was pretty happy for a first try!
    Tracey – most a must-make food!


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