Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Grilled Pizza with Peaches, Blackberries, Ricotta, and Balsamic Glaze

I probably should have written this post back when I made this pizza a few weeks ago, as it would have been more seasonally appropriate.  Today it's in the 60's and cloudy, which is delightful after all of the heat, but it doesn't seem like grilled fruity pizza weather.  Oh well, better late than never.  And come a few more weeks, when the weather really starts to cool down, making this can be a summery reminder of those dog days past.

I was inspired to make this pizza when I stumbled upon The Food Charlatan's recipe for Blackberry Ricotta Pizza late at night laying in bed.  I showed my husband, and he was all "please make that!".
It took me a few days, since blackberries were a little less accessible than I had hoped (got them at Target, of all places.  Thanks for nothing Trader Joe's and Safeway).  If you've read many of my posts, you'll also know that I am incapable of following someone else's recipe- it squashes my creative spirit.  So I added peaches, a balsamic glaze, and grilled it- the oven was NOT allowed to go on for a couple weeks there because of the heat.  

While it's fruity, it's not really that sweet, and there are savory components.  So it can be a main dish, side dish, or be served as dessert.  Or breakfast.  Whatever you're feeling, pretty much.  

You also do not, of course, have to grill it.  I did because I didn't want to turn the oven on, but as we approach these cooler months, I'd just make it in the oven.  If you are doing it in the oven, check out these instructions at Mel's Kitchen.  The secret to awesome homemade pizza is a HOT oven, and she has great instructions, both using a pizza stone and without.

As for dough, I just bought mine at Trader Joe's.  I did jazz it up a little with the addition of flax seeds.  I prefer to buy multigrain, which is usually a white flour dough with different seeds and grains added, but they don't always have this at whatever grocery store I'm going to.  So I buy white.  You can also buy whole-wheat, but I don't like the texture as much, and pizza is a treat, so I make it the way that it tastes best.  Or you could, of course, make your own.  I've used some different recipes over the years, but this one from Men's Health is super easy (no kneading!).  I add flax seeds, chia seeds, poppy seeds, and sesame seeds in as well to keep things interesting.

What you need:

1 pound pizza dough, leavened (store bought or make your own)
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
~1 cup ricotta (I used full-fat)
2/3 cup shredded mozzarella (I used part-skim, but either is fine)
1 pint blackberries
1 large or 2 small peaches, sliced (I left the skin on, but you can peel if you want)
small handful fresh basil, sliced
black pepper


Preheat grill on medium-high heat.
Next, put the balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer, reduce heat to LOW and let it keep boiling until it becomes slightly thick.  And be careful not to take a big whiff while it boils, that stuff is pungent!  You can have this going on while you start the rest of the pizza.
Stretch the dough out on a lightly greased surface (preferably something that you can pick up and transport outside). I usually just use my hands, but you can use a rolling pin, beer bottle, whatever.  Try to get it under 1/2 thick.  If you are having trouble getting it to stretch out, work it a bit, let it rest for a couple minutes, and then go at it again.  Don't worry about making it a perfect shape.  An irregular shape has a nice rustic quality.
Bring pizza dough out to the grill.  If you have a buddy, he/she will come in handy here.  Place pizza dough on the grill, trying to keep it as stretched out as possible.  I use somewhat of a slinging motion, and then (carefully) adjust the edges to stretch it back out a bit more.  With two pairs of hands it will be easier to simply pick it up and place it stretched out onto the grill.  Close the grill.  Let cook for 2-4 minutes, depending on the heat of the grill.  Use tongs to gently lift a corner to make sure it isn't burning.
As those 2-4 minutes go by, bring the ricotta, mozzarella, blackberries, peaches, and a fork out to the grill.
Flip the crust using tongs.  If there were any huge bubbles, burst those with the fork before flipping.  Turn the grill temperature down to low.  Now, add the toppings:  First the ricotta, then mozzarella, then blackberries and peaches.  Smoosh the blackberries a little with the fork.  Shut the grill and let cook for 5-7 minutes, checking to make sure it isn't burning (sometimes there is one hot spot, so rotating might help).  Take the pizza off the grill.  

Drizzle with the balsamic reduction.  Sprinkle with the sliced basil and black pepper.  Slice and enjoy!

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