No-Guilt Pizza

The new season of Top Chef started last night. In all my frantic excitement I was encouraged to cook something up even though the great husband wouldn’t be home. Usually on those nights I eat cereal or leftovers, but this was a special night. Not only was my favorite show coming back on the air, (airing from Chicago no less) but I also received a fabulous box full of produce delivered from Irv and Shelly’s Fresh Picks.
This particular delivery consisted of beautiful green kale, a delicious bulb of garlic, some sweet onions, and a boat load of other things. With the mentioned items I came up with the idea of topping a pizza. I had been reading this month’s edition of Food and Wine earlier that morning and decided to whip up the recipe for pizza dough they had written about. I was just looking for the perfect ingredients to top it with. Lucky for me they were delivered right to my door.
I decided to do something different and use a creamy kale sauce for the base. I learned the recipe at the Kids Table cooking class I had written in the last post. Topping it with some caramelized onions, chopped tomatoes, and shredded Parmesan sounded like the perfect combination. I was quite happy with the result. Not only was it delicious, but totally healthy and low fat. Something that you would be happy to serve your children.
Back to Top Chef. Looks like it is going to be a great season. They have chosen some pretty established chefs as contestants which will make for some amazing dishes and hearty competition. And what did they make for the first quickfire competition? PIZZA! How appropriate that they were working on theirs while I was noshing on mine!
Watch for me on the episode where they go to the Green City Farmers Market. I was there when they were filming. Maybe they caught me on camera. Once I realized they were filming I slyly stalked the cameras to see what they were up to.

Pizza Dough
from April 2008 edition of Food and Wine
Makes 2 large pizzas
1 envelope active dry yeast
3/4 c warm water
1 Tb canola oil
2 c all purpose flour,
plus more for dusting
Pinch of sugar
Pinch of salt
In a large bowl, mist the yeast with water and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the 1 Tb of oil, followed by the 2 c of flour and the sugar and salt. Continue stirring until a soft dough forms. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and knead until smooth and silky (I used my stand mixer with the dough hook for this step), about 5 minutes. Let the dough stand uncovered for 10 minutes, then divide it into 2 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and transfer to a lightly oiled baking sheet. Brush tops with oil and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight until slightly risen. Return to room temp before using. You will only be using 1 of the dough balls, so you can freeze the other one, or double the other recipes to make 2.

Creamy Kale Sauce
Adapted from Kids Table

makes about 2 cups
1 bunch kale
1 T olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup Greek yogurt
2-3 T milk
1/4 tsp salt
Remove and discard the center stems of the kale leaves and tear
the leaves into pieces. Steam the kale until wilted but still bright in
color, about 8 minutes.
Heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute
until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the steamed kale and saute an
additional 1-2 minutes. Stir in the Greek yogurt, milk and the
salt. Cook until heated through. Puree using hand blender or standing blender.

PIZZA DIRECTIONS

1 1/2 c creamy kale sauce

1 Tb olive oil

1 medium onion

1 1/2 c chopped tomatoes, drained

4 Tb Parmesan cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 475. If you have a pizza stone, place it in the oven while it is preheating. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to make a 16″ circle. With a fork, poke holes all over the middle of the crust where toppings will be. Slide it on on pizza stone in oven or place on a baking sheet and put in oven. Bake for 8-10 minutes until crispy, but not browned.

While dough is in the oven, heat oil in a fry pan. Add onions and cook over medium high heat until they are caramelized.

Remove from oven and place toppings on pizza in this order: kale sauce, sauted onions, chopped tomatoes, Parmesan cheese. Place back into the oven and cook for 10 minutes until crust and toppings are starting to brown.

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