Friday, June 19, 2009

Caprese Pizza with Bacon...

This week's Friday Night Pizza, Caprese Pizza with Bacon, is one that I will definitely be making again later this summer once our green tomatoes outside grow and ripen to a vibrant shade of red.

Using our favorite whole-wheat pizza dough as a base, I drizzled the large round of dough with olive oil and gave it a good rub down with my fingers. Because we wanted a crispier crunch to the thin bottom, I slid the dough onto the stone and left it to bake until the bottom just began to take on a golden hue.

As that was taking place, we kept busy by turning our attention to a few slices of smoky bacon I had cooking in a skillet. When it was almost cooked through, yet still a touch chewy, I snatched the pieces from the pan and let it drain as the crust was ready to come out. To give both sides of the crust contact with the stone, we flipped it over so the toppings would actually be arranged on what was the bottom. The first layer? A batch of homemade pesto that I was just barely able to make after snipping at our basil plants that were finally starting to get tall enough. The half cup we used was pretty lavish for this pizza and I think you can get away with using a third of a cup without losing out.

Rounds of a large tomato (if yours are on the smaller side, you might wish to add two) were laid on top, followed by just enough thinly sliced fresh mozzarella so each bite you took had a piece. This isn't the type of pizza that you want to drown in cheese so every inch of the top is covered, but you don't want to be skimpy either. Remember that bacon? After seasoning the cheese and tomatoes with a bit of salt and fresh ground black pepper, the chunky crumbles were scattered on top just before the pizza went back into the oven to finish baking. The reason I left the bacon a touch chewy is the pieces are not hidden under a blanket of cheese, so they will crisp a little more from the intense heat of the oven.

The only thing this pizza needed was a smattering of torn fresh basil once it was ready. Jeff asked, before taking a bite, if he should grab the wedge of Parmesan from the refrigerator to grate on top. I said "Taste it first... then you tell me!". He did and after I heard him finish comping through the crust, he muttered "Okay, I get your point". So there! Actually as I put Parmesan in the pesto, its sharpness came through in that layer well enough that there was no need for another dose on top. Using the bright pesto as the "sauce" was an ideal match as its freshness blew away anything else you might be tempted to use, especially when paired with the tomatoes and mozzarella. If you think you might have a problem getting the cheese to slice into thin rounds, wrap it up and toss the ball into the freezer for just about 15 minutes to firm it up.


  1. It looks yummy...I have to try this recipe. You have a very nice blog, congratulations. Have a nice weekend !

  2. Ginette - Thanks!

    Jeph - Hopefully our tomatoes will produce and we'll get to try it with our own later!