Monday, September 14, 2009

A Tribute to Italian Pizza and Recipe Spotlight: Prosciutto and Veggie Pizza

Pizza has always been my favorite food. In 2006 I was fortunate enough to live in Italy for four months, and ever since I truly appreciate just how amazing authentic Italian pizza really is. Instead of the thick crust, greasy, fatty, carbo-load pies often found in American pizzerias, Italian pizza is light, thin and chewy, topped with the freshest premium ingredients and cheese. And the best thing? It is culturally accepted to order a whole pizza per person- YES! Today's blog is a tribute to the perfection that is Italian pizza, followed by a recipe for a delicious make-at-home version. Mangia!

The Quattro Staggioni (4 seasons) pizza at Antico Borgo in Florence (across the river in the Oltrarno)- Prosciutto, artichokes, olives and mushrooms.

The pizza marinara at La Mangiatoia in Florence Oltrarno was my favorite cheap lunch. Along with a delicious glass of the house red wine it was only 5 euro. The pizza is super simple with san marzano tomatoes and slivered garlic, but oh so tasty. 

Fresh pies at Il Pizzaiuolo in Florence show off Naples-style crust and fresh toppings. Here is a fresh sausage, basil and garlic pizza and a marinara pizza. My dear friend Liza and I would split these in half so that we could have some of each!

I love Florence, but there is nothing better than real Naples pizza. A group of friends and I went here for dinner and feasted on the best in the world. I had a roasted vegetable pizza with fresh mozarella.

More Naples pizza. The crust is to die for- chewy, subtly creamy, light and airy, with deeply charred spots that intensify the fresh dough flavor. Sopping up extra virgin olive oil with the crust is heaven on earth.

Pizza in Venice was a nice mix of the thinner Florentine-style and the thicker Naples-style. This pizza features prosciutto, capers and olives. A salty combination that is purely addictive!

More Venice pizza. This one featured charred tomatoes and goat cheese. Delicious, creamy and fully satisfying.

Hungry yet? Here is a recipe for homemade pizza that is sure to satisfy. Remember, homemade pizza can be made with anything you have on hand- I make it weekly and never make the exact same pizza twice. Use seasonal ingredients for a special treat- Zucchini and tomatoes are perfect right now.

Fresh Prosciutto and Veggie Pizza
Crunchy veggies and salty prosciutto combine for an instant classic. 

Serves 2-3

One thin-crust premade pizza dough (I recommend Boboli or Archer Farms (Target brand))
1/2 c. tomato or marinara sauce
6 slices prosciutto
1 tomato, sliced
1/2 zucchini,chopped
1/4 red onion, diced
1/2 green pepper, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 c. shredded cheese
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. dried oregano

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Spread pizza sauce evenly on crust. Top with sliced prosciutto to cover majority of sauce. Top proscuitto with shredded cheese, then arrange veggies on top of cheese. Place tomatoes on top and season pie with garlic salt and oregano.

Bake in oven for 20 minutes until edges are browned and cheese is bubbling. Top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

Recipe Author: Sarah Saubert

1 comment:

  1. It's great to see how you use zucchini! I've been trying to find ways to use it from our garden -- I did pizza too, but it was leftover pieces I had grilled the night before with basil & olive oil -- it was great on pizza! I think I'll have some more garden fresh zucchini for you in the next week or so... lots of little ones on my plants right now :-)