If you ask us, you can’t really go wrong with pizza, so making it from scratch pretty much knocks it outta the park. We decided to kick off our week of menus with a fail-safe option: a sauceless “white” pizza topped with arugula. We know, we know, pizza without sauce seems kinda sacrilegious but you’ll change your mind the moment the first slice hits your lips. And topping your pizza with arugula (lightly coated with a tangy, tasty, lemony dressing) means you simultaneously munch your side salad along with bites of melt-y, garlic-y, cheese-y goodness, which we think its the most delicious way to eat your greens. Plus, multi-tasking is awesome! Market week meal 1? Finger-lickin’ good.
Yeast and olive oil
garlic olive oil
dough with garlic olive oil
White Pizza with Arugula (adapted from Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics by Ina Garten)
For the pizza
1 1/4 cups warm water
2 packages of dry yeast
1 Tbsp. honey
Good olive oil (we got ours from Brooklyn Larder and it has been worth every cent of those $22)
4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for kneading
4 garlic cloves, sliced
5 sprigs fresh thyme (Caroline picked ours from the community gardendoesnt get fresher than that!)
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
Freshly ground black pepper
2 cups Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cups sliced fresh mozzarella
11 oz. creamy goat cheese, crumbled
For the arugula topping
1/2 cup good olive oil
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
8 oz. baby arugula
For the dough, combine the water, yeast, honey, and 3 Tbsp. of olive oil in a large bowl. When yeast is dissolved, add 3 cups of the flour, then 2 tsp. salt, and mix (we did this by hand but you can use an electric mixer with dough hooks). While mixing, add up to 1 more cup of flour, or just enough to make the dough soft. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes until smooth, sprinkling with the flour as necessary to keep it from sticking to the bowl. Then turn it out onto a floured board and knead it by hand a dozen times. It should be smooth and elastic. Place the dough in a well-oiled bowl and turn it to cover it lightly with oil. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and allow it to rise at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the garlic oil. Place 1/2 cup olive oil, garlic, thyme, and red pepper flakes in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over low heat. Cook for 10 minutes, making sure garlic doesn’t burn. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
Dump the dough onto a board and divide into 6 equal pieces. Use immediately, or refrigerate up to 4 hours (we froze 2 of our dough balls for a future date!)
Press and stretch each ball into an 8-inch circle and place 2 circles on each parchment-lined sheet pan. (If youve chilled the dough, take out of refrigerator for 30 minutes and let it come to room temperature.) Brush pizzas with the garlic oil and sprinkle each with salt and pepper. (We’re big fans of the stinking rose so we also add the garlic slices…not recommended if you plan on making out after dinner.) Sprinkle pizzas with Parmesan, mozzarella, and goat cheese. Drizzle each pizza with 1 Tbsp. more of the garlic oil and bake for 10 15 minutes, until crusts are crisp and the cheese begins to brown.
Meanwhile, for the vinaigrette, whisk together 1/2 cup of olive oil, lemon juice, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper. When the pizzas are done, place arugula in a large bowl and toss with just enough vinaigrette to moisten. Place a large bunch of arugula on each pizza and serve immediately. Don’t even try to stop at one piece. That’s just setting yourself up for failure.