The Toronto Raptors are in the NBA playoffs, the Montreal Canadiens are in the NHL playoffs and the Toronto Blue Jays have just started the 2014 baseball season. If you are a sports fan you are feeling pretty good right now and those three things are reason enough to throw a pizza party. I’ve got just the cookbook to help you do just that. Pizza: Seasonal Recipes from Rome’s Legendary Pizzarium this cookbook is by the man Vogue magazine called “The Michelangelo of Dough”. Gabriele Bonci has been developing his signature style at his small pizzeria in Rome. He uses stone-milled farro flours and relies on the seasons to determine his unconventional topping combinations. He comes up with more than 1500 different topping combos each year! This guy knows his pizza and this book is going to show you how it’s done.
Flipping through the book you’ll find a plethora of unique and exciting pizza toppings, there’s the Pizza with Figs and Rosemary, Pizza with Grilled Peaches and Curly Endive, Pizza with Potatoes, Green Beans and Sautéed Cuttlefish, Pizza with Romanesco Broccoli and Cured Pork Loin, Pizza with Chickpea Puree and Baccalà, Pizza with Edible Flowers, Pizza with Ricotta, Persimmons and ‘Nduja…
He takes you through the basic doughs that he uses – there are three types; white, mixed grain and whole grain. He uses natural yeast and encourages home cooks to do the same saying “Developing your own yeast is definitely worth a try. After all, there was a time when industrial yeast was not yet available, so all the bread and pizza was made without it.” Of course if your efforts prove fruitless or you just don’t have the patience you can use store bought yeast.
Once you make your dough you can try your hand at one of his amazing recipes. How about a Shrimp Cocktail Pizza? Here’s how he basically makes that pizza. Make ketchup from scratch, make a mayo and mix the two to make cocktail sauce. Crank the oven to 475 and spread out the dough in a well oiled pan. Crush some canned, peeled tomatoes and scatter them onto the dough – instant tomato sauce! Bake the pizza until golden, about 25 minutes. While the pizza is baking you can cook the shrimp until they are just pink. Remove the pizza from the oven, tear some frisée over top, then finish with the cocktail sauce and the warm shrimp.
Amazing right? Think how much fun you’re going to have. Go Jays! Go Raptors! Go Habs!