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Saturday, 18 June 2011

Pizza Topping Suggestions

Its endless. If you like 4 kinds of cheese do it, if you like swine in 5 varieties do it. The only real key is not to over crowd. Apart from the regulars (mushroom, tomato, semi-dried tomato, onion, bacon etc), these are some of the toppings we use.

Potato and rosemary: Slice potato very thinly (I recommend using a mandolin), pat dry and toss through some garlic oil and finely chopped rosemary with some salt and pepper. Place on top of the pizza in a single layer only overlapping slightly. Sprinkle with some grated parmesan and a little more oil. Cook until it has a golden colour.

Oven roasted capsicum: Rub some oil over a capsicum and stick it on a shelf in a preheated 180C oven with an oven proof dish underneath to catch the escaping juices (discard these they will burn). Roast until the skin has mostly blackened, remove to a clean bowl, cover with cling wrap and allow to cool. Peel the skin off and slice. Add the leftover juice to a marinade or salad dressing.

Oven roasted pumpkin: Cut into bite sized pieces and coat in a mixture of garlic oil, balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper and roast for 20 minutes or so until tender and with a little colour.

Dressed Rocket: Wash and pat dry some rocket then dress with an acid (balsamic, wine vinegar, lemon etc) and extra virgin olive oil and shavings of parmesan. Put this on after the pizza has been cooked.

Basil leaves: Put 'em on whole, one layer under the cheese.

Barbecued balsamic thyme chicken: We use it heaps.

Grilled prosciutto: Speaks for itself, great with chicken.

Toasted pine nuts: If you haven't used toasted pine nuts you are missing out. Pour half of a small bag of pine nuts into a small saucepan and dry roast until they have a little colour on most sides. Watch carefully that they don't burn. Sprinkle on your pizza.

Lamb: Slow roasted, barbecued, braised, shank, its pretty good. Great with some drops of yoghurt on after cooking.

Oven roasted cherry tomatoes: Also pour a little of the oil over the top afterwards.

Feta: In all of its wonderful guises. If you are using gear in oil, top the finished pizza with a little of the oil.

Sweet potato: Use the same method (or similar) as for the pumpkin or even more easily, get a potato peeler and slash at one raw, above the pizza.

Chilli flakes: We have to put these on afterwards due to the stinkin kids...

Crab: Spend $15 and buy a tub of crab meat, spread over 2 pizzas. Better still, toss it through roasted capsicum juice first.

Pork fillet: Season it with salt and pepper and some herbs and sear in a pan and finish in a 180C oven for 15 mins. Thinly slice and add to the pizza. It should be pink but remember it will continue to cook on the pizza and, as pork fillet has no fat it will dry out terribly if it is over cooked.

Pear: Sounds poxy but it is great with pork. Slice it thinly and scatter.

Egg: Make sure the base has an edge and crack a couple of whole eggs on, give it some diced bacon and stuff.

Caramelised onion: Rad. Use store bought gear (the Always Fresh Caramelised Onion Relish is excellent) or try this caramelised onion recipe. Great with pork and pear and some dressed rocket.

Balsamic thyme chicken, mushroom and asparagus

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