Phew! It's been a crazy few weeks. Don't you hate when those paying jobs have to get in the way of the fun stuff, like blogging? Geez. I've been talking about this pizza for at least a week and here it finally is. Since I first made it about a month or so ago, it's been on our menu three times and has become a household favorite. I'm just gonna simply say yummmmm. Yep, five m's worth. Maybe even six.
Whole Wheat Crust:
1 envelope dry yeast
1 tsp sugar
1 cup warm water
3/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 - 2 1/2 cups unbleached white flour
15 oz black beans*
1 cup prepared salsa (homemade or store bought)
2 jalapenos or 1 serrano chile, cut rough chunks
2 large garlic cloves, smashed
1 cup diced bell pepper (red, green, yellow or mix)
1 cup fresh (cooked) or frozen (thawed) corn kernels
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1 cup shredded cheddar
2 avocados, diced (optional)
Sour cream (optional)
*You can use dried or canned beans for this recipe. If using dried, soak about 200 grams and cook according to package directions (1 - 1.5 hours). If using canned, drain and rinse well before using.
To make the crust, combine yeast and sugar in water. Stir until dissolved. Add salt, oil, whole wheat flour and 1 1/2 cups unbleached flour. Stir well.
Add enough remaining flour to make a soft dough. Knead on a lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 5 - 10 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 20 - 30 minutes.
If using a metal pizza pan, lightly grease it, or you can use a pizza stone. Stretch and pat or roll dough to a 15" round. Bake at 400° for 5 minutes, until crust is dry and lightly browned. Set aside.
While the dough is rising and prebaking, you can prepare the pizza topping. In a blender or food processor, combine the beans, salsa, chile and garlic, and puree until smooth. Dice the peppers, green onion and cilantro and shred the cheeses.
Spread the bean puree over the prebaked crust and top with the diced peppers, corn, green onions, cilantro and cheeses.
Bake at 400° for 7 - 12 minutes until cheesy is bubbly and crust edges are browned. Allow pizza to cool for 5 minutes before cutting. I know, it's very hard to wait…
Top with cubes of avocado and a dollop of sour cream, if desired, and dig in!
This pizza is perfect for the vegetarians in your life. It's rich and hearty and the carnivores at the table won't even miss the meat. However, chicken does pair perfectly with the other ingredients in this dish and gives this pizza a new life for the meat-eaters. Just add bite-sized chunks of cooked chicken on top of the bean puree with the other ingredients and bake as directed.