Tuesday, January 8, 2013
TWD: Baking with Julia - Pizza with Onion Confit
Now, you may think, "broken fingertip, no big deal". And the reality is that in the scheme of things, it really is no big deal. It could have been an entire finger or my entire hand or really much much worse than it is. However, I am pregnant. So when I finally decided that I probably needed medical attention (at 11pm) and went to an emergency clinic, I realized how difficult being pregnant made this situation. No x-ray --- potential harm to the baby. So though I don"t know for sure that it is broken, the doc seemed pretty certain. Oh, and pain meds? Not so much. Again, potential harm to the baby. Just Tylenol, sorry, WITH A BROKEN BONE?!? Ugh. Happily, my obstetrician approved something a bit stronger today so maybe I can sleep tonight! Oh, are you wondering how this happened in the first place? It was in the process of constructing a "big girl" bed for my daughter, which will be fodder for another post. A part of the bed started falling over, Mr. Clever Mom jumped over me to catch it, and in the process he landed ON and then pushed OFF of my finger with his foot, crushing it into our concrete garage floor. Trust me, he feels awful.
Anyway, it is my right ring finger and I am right handed. That hand is pretty bandaged up right now so let me just apologize now for any weird typos in this post and the serious lack of photos. But, I decided to try this recipe and I AM REALLY GLAD I DID!!
The pizza dough starts with a sponge, which involves yeast, water, olive oil and flour. After sitting for 1 1/2 hours, it is nice and bubbly like the photo above. To the sponge, you add more flour and some salt and then let it rise again for about 1 1/2 hours. Dough is done.
In the mean time, you make the onion confit. Though I am not entirely certain, I think the difference between caramelized onions and onion confit is that the confit are cooked in a liquid that reduces with them, so the onions take on that flavor along with their own. Anyone know if this is right? Anyway, this is where having a fairly useless hand became problematic. I shoved a latex medical-type glove as much as I could over that hand, held the knife with my thumb and forefinger, and made the best onion slices I could with lots of assistance from my left hand. I tried cutting them with my left hand only but that wasn't such a good plan. I did not want to head back to the ER with a knife wound! So, if these onions were under any scrutiny for evenness and size I'd probably fair poorly, but since they were for my family's enjoyment, it worked out all right!
The onions are softened with butter, salt, pepper, and then some sugar. Then you add red wine and red wine vinegar, thyme, and creme de cassis. I did not have creme de cassis so I added some raspberry brandy instead. They cooked for a LONG time until the liquid was mostly all gone. YUM. Wow. You end up with this delicious sweet yet somewhat savory concoction that is like heaven. I love caramelized onions and these are possibly equally as amazing. A very close second, that is certain!
Split the dough into two balls, roll or press one out into whatever shape you end up with (mine turn out more square-ish than round) and spread half of the onion confit over the top. (Half of what is left after you stop repeatedly "tasting" it, that is!) The rest of the toppings are up to you. I used some herb/garlic goat cheese and some sundried tomatoes. The dough recipe makes 2 crusts so you can make 2 identical pizzas or do something totally different with the second. I simply made 2 of the same. They bake on a hot pizza stone for 13-15 minutes at 475F.
I loved this pizza. It is different from the pizzas we usually eat and it was divine. The clever girl thought the onion confit was delicious! That's my girl! The topping options are endless and I cannot wait to see what other TWD bakers did with theirs. If you are curious as well, head to the TWD blog and clock on the post that says "LYL: Pizza with Onion Confit". This is where we leave links to our different blog posts. For the recipe visit this week's host, Paul, of The Boy Can Bake, or you can find it on pages 157-159 of Baking with Julia.