2.4.14 Balsamic Mushroom, Bacon and Goat Cheese Pizza
Mushrooms are a bone of contention in our household. If I had my way, we would eat them all of the time. Literally, all of the time - I absolutely love mushrooms. Especially in the colder months, their substantial earthiness is just lovely. On the other hand, Forrest can’t stand them. I’m pretty sure he would rather eat pretty much anything else before he would voluntarily eat a mushroom. So I’m reduced to sneaking them into recipes in very small pieces, and other sneaky tricks like that. Now you know, Forrest. And I’m sorry, but I just really like mushrooms.
I’m sure then, you can imagine that when Forrest is not around for dinner, and I’m left to cook for myself, most of the time I’m cooking mushrooms. Lots and lots of them. And with no need to hide them, I can really make them sing. Like this delicious mushroom pizza. There are few things cozier on a cold winter’s night than the smell of a freshly made pizza baking. Especially when said pizza is topped with cremini mushrooms, garlic, rosemary, and balsamic vinegar. Of course, some smoky bacon and tangy goat cheese only make things better. The only challenge here is waiting until the pizza cools to eat it. Me, I could barely contain myself once this thing came out of the oven. And delicious? Yes, most definitely. Salty, tangy, smoky, slightly sweet, and packed with mushrooms. And the best part is, I won’t have to share the leftovers.
Balsamic Mushroom, Bacon, and Goat Cheese Pizza
makes 1 large pizza
- 1 ½ Tbsp olive oil, divided
- 1 Tbsp butter
- 12 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tsp dried rosemary
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- ½ tsp crushed red pepper
- 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- Pizza Dough (recipe follows)
- 1 tsp cornmeal
- 2-3 slices thick cut bacon, cooked and crumbled
- 3 oz goat cheese, crumbled
1.Grease a baking sheet or large pizza pan with cooking spray and sprinkle it with the cornmeal. Place dough in the center of the pan and spread all the way to the edges, spreading dough as thinly as you can without tearing it. Let pizza dough rest while oven heats and you prep the rest of your toppings. (hint - if you’re having trouble spreading the dough all the way to the edges, spread it as far as you can, then let it rest for about 5 minutes. After resting, it will be easier to finish spreading the dough all the way to the edges of the pan).
2. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
3. Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil and 1 Tbsp butter in a pan over medium heat. Once butter is melted, add the mushrooms, garlic, salt and pepper and cook until mushrooms are tender, about 4-5 minutes.
4. Add the rosemary, thyme, and crushed red pepper to the mushrooms and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes. Add the balsamic vinegar, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and cook until vinegar reduces and thickens slightly, about 5 minutes.
5. Top pizza dough with ½ Tbsp of olive oil and spread it so it covers the surface of the dough all the way to the edges. Top evenly with the balsamic mushroom mixture, then evenly sprinkle on the crumbled bacon and goat cheese.
6. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the crust and cheese are beginning to brown. Cool slightly, then slice and enjoy!
Makes 1 large pizza
More in-depth details on perfect pizza dough here.
- ¾ c warm water
- 1 t active dry yeast
- 1 T honey
- 2 c flour (preferably bread flour)
- 1 t salt
1. Dissolve yeast and honey in water, let sit for 5 minutes.
2. Combine the flour and salt and a large bowl. Make a well in the center and add the liquid ingredients, stirring until ingredients are just combined. Let sit for 10-20 minutes. (note: this sitting stage allows the gluten network to start forming through hydration, which will cut down on your overall kneading time by about 50%. If you’d rather not wait, you can start kneading immediately, and you will just end up needing to work the dough for about 6-8 minutes to build up a sufficient gluten network).
3. Knead dough until a smooth cohesive ball forms and dough passes the ‘windowpane test’ (should take about 2-4 minutes if you rested the dough in the previous step, otherwise about 6-8 minutes).
4. Spray a bowl with cooking spray, put dough into bowl, turning to coat both sides of dough with oil. Cover bowl and let sit at room temperature for 60-90 minutes, or until dough has doubled in size.