My heart still trembles to think of it. I have been to Paris. Spent a week in her lap, walking, walking…simply walking, and breathing in all that is Paris. Even the street names sounded so pretty, rolling off the tongue with their exquisite foreignness. Rue de Rivoli, Rue Montmartre, Avenue du Champs-Elysees, Rue des Mauvais Garcon, Rue de Louvre, Rue de…well…
In the heart of Paris, close to Montparnasse, is where we had the most exquisite pizza of our lives. Pizza Margherite. Every mouthful was a saucy, cheesy delight. And it helped that we were desperately hungry. The anticipation was at a pitch and the pizza did not disappoint. Now every single pizza that we taste gets held up to the one we had in ‘Paree’. Tough, I know. But there it is. We must all have a dream.
Making a ‘good’ pizza has ever been a challenge. Either the crust is too doughy or too wafer-y or too undercooked or too overcooked…
But this time..it was different.
The dough (Olive oil dough from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes A Day):
2 3/4 cups lukewarm water
2 packets yeast – I believe 2 tbsp..
1 1/2 tbsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
1/4 cup virgin olive oil
1 tbsp dried rosemary (optional)
6 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1. Mix the yeast, salt, sugar, olive oil, and rosemary with the water in a 5 qt bowl.
2. Mix in flour without kneading, using a wooden spoon, until all the flour is incorporated.
3. Let rest approximately 2 hours.
Note: The rosemary is our addition.
More importantly, I used half the recipe. It made 4, approximately 9″-10″ pizzas.
1/4 cup olive oil
4 pods of garlic, minced or crushed
1 28 oz. can Cento San Marzano peeled tomatoes
2 tbsp sage
2 tbsp oregano
salt and pepper to taste
1. Heat the oil and add garlic. Saute for 15 seconds.
2. Add the sage and oregano, stir for a quick second.
3. Add the tomatoes. Mash them roughly with your spatula.
4. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Let simmer for 30-45 minutes, until thickened. Cool.
Light the fire. Call on the grill.
Do you smell the fire? That sizzling charcoal-y earthiness?
While the heat is raking over the coals, lets put the pizza together…
Divide the dough into 4 equal sized balls.
Stretch, roll each one out into an approximately 9″ round, 1/8″ thick base.
(We made them one at a time so the dough did not get soggy from the sauce.)
Top with sauce, mozarella, and toppings of your choice.
Put it on the grill, at 450, for about 8 minutes.
Note: We use the Green Egg and the outside temperature read 350.
And viola: Pizza a` Paris.
Well….maybe not precisely…but close enough. 😉
Bon Apetit, mes amis!!!
A votre sante`!