By design, I spend my time alone. Most days, I speak to my parents and Milo and that's it. I like it this way, so different from the years I spent at school and in hotels, always trying to please and joke and try a little harder than the day before. This December is so much like last year, but so different, too. I am different, I have changed. I no longer wear try to navigate how to be so lonely on the West Coast. I moved back and I am different and the same all at once now.
This year I tried to make recipes that reflected this change, this ingratiation back into a world I had left. It's funny, when I was gone, I spent my time dreaming of the food I ate when I lived in the Midwest. Back Home, I used to refer to it--sometimes capitalized, sometimes italicized, and always out of reach. And now that I am here, I am balancing the techniques and palate I have since gained in the four year span where I was poor and a student then not poor and no longer a student with how my parents eat. It is a balancing act, a tightrope of histrionics and culture that I am sometimes terrible at unraveling.
I hope this pizza is a marriage of two versions of me. Seasonal produce displayed on a hearty, pillowy crust. Spiked with liqueur and dotted with cheese, it's an iteration of flavors I have used throughout the year, but especially appropriate now for the holiday table.
Seasonal Fruit Pizza
Using Red Star Yeast's active dry yeast, this crust is light, but enriched with honey and almond meal. It's a great appetizer and would be an even better dessert with some vanilla bean ice cream to top it with as more of a galette at that point than a pizza. See the author's notes below for making this into smaller portions.
- 1 1/4 cup water, warm to the touch
- 1/2 cup white sugar, divided
- 2 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 2 1/2 cup AP flour
- 3/4 cup almond meal
- 3 TB olive oil
- 2 TB honey
- 1/4 cup raspberry jam, warmed slightly in the microwave or stovetop
- Seeds and juice of half a pomegranate
- 1/4 cup cranberries
- 3 Bosc pears, sliced and seeded
- Juice and zest of 2 clementines
- 4 oz goat or blue cheese
- 2 TB almonds
- 2 TB Grand Marnier
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together water, 1 TB of your white sugar, and yeast
- Allow mixture to sit for ten minutes or until bubbly
- While yeast is sitting, sift together almond meal and flour
- In your yeast mixture, add olive oil and honey, stir slightly with a wooden spoon
- Next, slowly add in your flours, a fourth of a cup at a time, stirring slowly and continuously until a dough forms
- Now, turn this dough out onto a floured work surface and knead until springy, about 7 minutes
- Rest in an oiled bowl, covered, for one hour or until doubled in size
- While dough is resting, preheat oven to 450*F
- Roll out onto a pizza stone or pan (see note below)
- Now, pour on your jam, but leave a half-inch margin for your crust
- Top with fruit, juices, cheese, and liqueur in any design you'd like
- Bake for 35 minutes or until crust is golden brown and puffed
- Eat immediately or store for one day - due to the yeast content, it will dry out fairly quickly
Note: I made one large 12-inch pizza, but feel free to divide this dough and your toppings accordingly. Smaller pizzas, of course, will have a smaller bake time, so begin checking at the 20-minute mark for doneness.
Thank you to Red Star Yeast for sponsoring this post. I believe in using quality products when it comes to baking and I am always confident my dough will rise beautifully with Red Star! Check out the active dry yeast I used for this recipe and others on their website, follow them on instagram and like their Facebook!