After long hiatus, Ultimate Pizza is back (click the think for posts on the components). We’ve brewed up a new batch of dough, and called up some friends and family.
For those of you who don’t know, Ultimate Pizza is our super homemade pizza where we make everything from scratch. In the past I’ve written separate articles detailing elements such as the Dough, Sauce, Pesto, and Toppings.
Every dough batch is different. For more on making it, see here. After three days cold fermenting in the fridge this batch had a weird spiderwebby quality and was very sticky. But that wasn’t anything a little dusting of flour didn’t solve. And baked, it tasted great as always.
This 1997 Barolo served as a good opener, warming up the palette.
The first pizza on the block. Starts with basic totally fresh raw tomato sauce made with Santa Monica Farmer’s Market Marzano tomatoes and mozzarella.
Then some parmesan, basil.
Figs, marcona almonds.
And after baking. They aren’t always pretty, but they are good!
I “found” this 1966 Chateau Lafite-Rothchild in my cellar and figured it wasn’t getting any better.
Parker says: “Except for the 1966 and 1870 vintages of Lafite-Rothschild, these wines were poured on virgin territory on my palate. Isn’t it ironic that the most disappointing wine (forgetting the spoiled 1875 Lafite-Rothschild, which had frightful levels of volatile acidity) was the youngest wine, the 1966 Lafite. With a light to medium ruby/garnet color, this wine exhibited a classy, weedy, herbal, Cabernet-dominated nose, soft, washed-out flavors, and little body and length. It is also beginning to dry out. I suppose if one were to taste a 30-year old Cabernet from Monterey County, California, it might reveal similar characteristics. The 1966 Lafite-Rothschild has consistently been a major disappointment from what is an irregular, but very good vintage.”
But we had good luck with this bottle, and it was actually rather wonderful.
The next pizza. Fairly similar, but no sauce.
Finished with balsamic glaze.
Then a cheesier mushroom one.
Then my special salmon pizza, which I do just with olive oil and rosemary (picked from the garden).
Then add a mixture of creme fraiche (detail on that here), dill, and chives, plus capers and onions.
And lox. Yum!
The 2004 il Cocco riserva. Only one barrel made!
Another fairly normal pizza, with figs and mushrooms.
My “famous” tikka masala pizza. Masala sauce instead of tomato. Corn, cilantro, goat cheese, mozzarella balls, morel mushrooms, almonds, scallions.
Cooked. This is an amazing (and strong flavored) pizza.
Mirella (one of our frequent pizza chefs) likes to make unique pizzas. This “Lebanese Pizza” began with her homemade muhammara sauce, which is a Lebanese sauce made from peppers, walnuts, olive oil and various other things. She baked it fairly simple.
Then added amazing fresh burrata on top and fresh mint. This was also fantastic.
Another tomato sauce based pizza, with parmesan, figs, goat cheese (a slightly aged chevre from an artisan California dairy), marcona almonds, scallions.
And as the last pizza of the evening, my Formaggio Maximus. Olive oil, a little pesto. Fresh chanterelle and lobster mushrooms. Corn, figs, almonds, a little basil, and nearly every type of cheese I have: parmesan, mozzarella, pecorino, goat, and gorgonzola dulce.
Then key to the FM is a big blog of burrata and an olive oil and balsamic drizzle.
Dessert time. A giant raspberry macaroon.
And a sinful red velvet, chocolate, and cream-cheese icing cake. Oh the suffering. The worst thing about this cake is that half was left over and I personally ate all of it over the next four days.
The next day for lunch we whipped up a few more pizzas. Here another variant of my tikka masala pizza.
On the stone.
And finished. I do so love this pizza.
Then a green pesto and salad pizza. The greens are arugala tossed with black pepper and fresh meyer lemon juice.
Two buns in the oven.
An even greener pizza.
Which we left in about 1 minute too long.
And my special “tuna salad” pizza. Tomato sauce, fresh chunk Italian tuna, parmesan, pecorino, capers, red onions, and arugala salad.
That sure was a good amount of pizza!
For more Ultimate Pizza posts, click here.