A new migratory season has begun for me. A new job means I will keep moving to and fro again, from the studio to my parents’ place – and the food moves with me, just like this pizza. Remember my wandering muffins and bread-traveller? I expect there will be more of them soon.
I just started missing those sunny days before the mid-summer when here we are again, with sun & wind and very summer indeed! Kind of weird to feel nostalgic in late July, eh? But it was such a stark difference a few days ago, almost autumn-like, with rains and cold nights. Well, St Petersburg summer is a really fleeting and capricious thing, might end just like that, in a day. But at least we’re enjoying the promised summer-come-back now!
So, pizza. I just need to publish this recipe until it gets too late for the zucchini and aubergine season 😉
A year ago – Fruit Post featuring such great recipes for your summer harvest as Sorbet Two Ways and Crostata di Marmellata (Italian Jam Tart) with Fresh Peach Pie for a change or my Improvised Black Currant Swirl Cheesecake.
Also almost a year ago a more related post – Vegetable Post: Eggplant-Ricotta Bake + Felicity’s Perfect Pea Soup + Beetroot and Pear (!!) Soup + my Baked Baby Potatoes. Up to you what to choose!
Whole Grain Pizza Dough adapted from www.annies-eats.com will make a very tasty pizza base ready to host all your creative topping : ) enough for 4-5 medium pizzas.
The recipe for the dough is pretty simple and there were just a few changes that I made. Go to the original website to see the instructions.
I added some rye flour and even a couple of unfed rye sourdough right from the fridge (just for an extra zang) and also reduced the amount of honey and yeast (roughly – used just a half of what was required). I didn’t add the optional herbs.
And here’s what I added for the vegetarian topping:
- baby zucchinis, thinly sliced
- baby aubergines, thinly sliced
- olives, sliced
- mushrooms, sliced
- Cheese – sliced + grated to top the topping
- dried basil
- (next pizzas contained tomatoes and onion but I prefer to avoid adding them)
– all spread in a complete disorder on the layer of [crushed tomatoes mixed with a splash of soy sauce, chopped basil and spring onion and seasoned with curry spices]. Don’t forget to brush the outer rind of the dough (that you leave without topping) with olive oil so that it won’t burn that much. Also add just a splash of olive oil once all your topping is over.
fresh zucchini slices ready to go on top of the pizza
Remarks on the topping: This pizza should be baked at 250 ‘C so be careful not to burn it. If you make a topping which doesn’t require much cooking time, it will take just about 8 to 12 minutes. But as my topping contained raw aubergines + zucchinis, I had to increase the time + also baked several minutes on the top shelf.
Remarks on the dough: As I was not going to bake 4-5 pizzas at once, I kept the rest of the dough in the fridge. It went like this: I baked one pizza on the day of making the dough, then the dough rested covered and oiled in the fridge overnight, then it made a trip to my parents’ home, where I made two pizzas in the evening. The dough then spent another night in the fridge, then I made two more pizzas and froze them already topped ready for baking in the evening. So you can see that the yeast preserved its effect throughout this time and the dough became even tangier in 2 days. The author also suggests freezing the dough to use later. Beware: The dough sticks to the baking sheet, use paper or be sure to sprinkle the sheet with cornmeal / semolina reeeeaaally well!
Result: Great wholewheat (+rye) crust! I made 5 pizzas all in all, and three of them were with meat for my Dad. But you know, the two vegetarian ones (the first one is pictured above) were really loaded and had those mushrooms and cheese that made pizza so nutritious. I recall eating that gorgeous pizza melanzane e formaggi in Venice back in January and you know what? It was soooo cool – no meat needed!
And this is my today’s supper – Zucchini and Aubergines à la 23ème (the floor where I live) – nothing easier, I just seasoned and roasted them with carrots, adding a nice splash of Greek olive oil. Ah, yes, also with some salted cream cheese. And all the sorts of herbs from our dacha. I must say I started enjoying these balcony hang-outs here, it’s just that in winter the 23rd floor open to all 4 winds seems a-w-f-u-l.
Some more sunny shots:
The board reads: Keep off the grass! Aha-aha! VERY Russian!
in the Yelagin Island Park, St Petersburg, when it is sunny and warm
Have taken lots of photos today at my new job, the building is of the mid 19th century and inside it’s a true marvel!