much pizza

I got so inspired by that speck & gorgonzola pizza at Tonda, I decided to make up a big batch of dough so I could make a few pizzas at home. This is #1 — inspired by a trip many years ago to Pizzeria Bianco in Phoenix. Even back then, it took hours to wait for a table there, but it was hands-down the best pizza I’ve ever had in my life. I dream about that place. One of the pies I tried there was topped with caramelized onions. I decided to make my own version. The results were kind of astounding, especially since I worked without a recipe.

Well, actually, the dough was a real recipe taken from a favorite, now out-of-print book by Judith Barrett. It’s my go-to pizza dough recipe. Here is the dough, ready to rise.

And here it is after a first rise. I actually lost track of it the second time around and it was literally spilling over the side of the bowl. I wish I’d gotten a photo of that — very funny.

Then I had to slow cook the onions. I sliced up three big ones, sauteed them in a bit of olive oil and butter, added some salt, and covered the pan. I let it cook for about twenty minutes, stirring just occasionally.

Then I uncovered the pan and cooked them over higher heat, stirring often, for another 10 minutes, until they got this great color. Actually, I probably let them cook a bit more than that to get really dark.

I stretched out the dough on a baking sheet. (I used to have a pizza stone, but I hardly ever used it and it took up so much space!) I added a layer of fresh mozzarella for some body. Then I added the caramelized onions and grated fontina cheese — a heavenly combination. (Jen said it tasted like French onion soup, but in pizza form.) I put this into a 450-degree oven for about 12 minutes. I couldn’t get that blackened crust, but I didn’t mind one bit.

60 thoughts on “much pizza

  1. Justin your pizza looks awesome! I have to get better at making the onions. I always burn them!! Oh, and my pizza dough recipe definitely could use a little tweaking.

  2. Justin now that is a pizza! Caramelized onions I swear are just perfect on a homemade pizza. The smells coming from the oven are heavenly. Love that fist shot!

  3. sophie: thanks for visiting. yeah, caramelized onions are so amazingjessy: yeah, i know it’s so easy to just buy some dough at the store, but you can’t beat the results of making it at home. I made a double-batch, enough for about 4 pizzasphilippa: hi, thanks so muchginger: sure, it’s easy to burn them… you just have to keep an eye out. and once I found a really good dough recipe, i was all set.dawn: thanks!doggybloggy: thanks to you, too!

  4. This looks fan-effing-tastic. I seriously could walk to Pizzeria Biano from where I work, but I can find no one who will go with me. My fabulous 20-something friends don’t understand the appeal. “Wait three hours? For pizza? And there’s no scene?! Sorry, we don’t wait in lines. I’ll meet you at some trendy lounge and drink my dinner instead.”

  5. When my parents first told me that they wanted to spend the holidays somewhere warm this year and were considering Florida or somewhere in the Southwest, I immediately voted for Phoenix just because I wanted to go to Pizzeria Bianco! I saw it on the Bon Appetit special on the FN. Now I’m looking forward to it even more based on your comments!I love all the caramelized onions on top of your pie – they’re just SO yummy!

  6. tramie: ha, it’s never too early for pizzachristina: yeah, that happens with a lot of kitchen things I buy — i’m all excited about them at first and then I forget I even own themrose: thanks, and I agreegirlichef: ha, thanks for visitingpear: definitely try itmiss v: yeah, that’s why I made another pizza right after this one… will write about it nextjenn: thanks for visitingmeleyna: okay, we’re officially jealous of you, like foreverkerstin: oh man, I wish I was going there again soon

  7. On days when I eat vegan, it’s caramelized onions that give me the sweet “beefy” taste I miss. I love them so. That and fontina cheese must have been so delicious. Good job improvising, Justin.

  8. leela: i know what you mean… i made another pizza with mushrooms and balsamic vinegar and it did the same thing — very meaty without the meat

  9. You had me at caramelized onions. I’m not a big pizza fan, but this looks like something I could get into. Although I’m not sure my jeans will be something I can get into if I allowed myself to indulge my passion for caramelized onions.

  10. I’m always looking for new pizza ideas. I use a recipe (for the dough) from the May/June 1988 issue of Cook’s. It’s a recipe by Steven Connolly developed for home ovens. ;)I’m going to do a variation of this. Love the idea of the caramelized onions which I love.

  11. Frensh onion soup on pizza, that’s exactly what I was thinking about reading the recipe! It looks SOOOO delicious, caramelized onions melt my heart!

  12. aruna: next time i’ll save you onemarta: thanks!michelle: i actually have one of those OXO pizza cutters and the blade is plastic, so that helps, but the pan I used in that shot also helps — no nonstick coating to scratch. it’s Doughmakers. I bought them so long ago, I don’t really know if they make them anymore, but they’re pretty much indestructible.

  13. linda: the dough recipe comes from an old out-of-print book you can’t buy anymore, but you could probably use any pizza doughpamela: thanks

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