I was lucky enough to be invited over to my friends house for dinner recently, which was awesome, as these friends are right into pizza. I've never really made pizzas so it was great to get into Ben and Sam's kitchen and see them at work. After last night, I want to make pizza. I will make pizza. I am going to make pizza.
Being the awesome friend that I am I rocked up with a gorgeous Christmas/Host Gift Basket that contained a delicious bottle of wine, a steamed Christmas pudding, some fruit mince tarts and some cupcakes w buttercream icing. The wine was opened and the cooking commenced.
To start with, Sam fried up some chorizo and capsicum in olive oil. In the last few seconds she threw in some cherry tomatoes and tossed it all together until the tomatoes were warmed through. I was watching her thinking 'this is going to be such a yummy pizza' and was super surprised when she tipped the contents of the pan into a bowl and placed it on the table. Turns out this was an appetizer and we all enjoyed picking at it until dinner was served.
So, the three pizzas on the menu were:
- The Antipasto
- The Greek
- The This Pizza is Winning
These are by no means the actual names of the pizza, more the nicknames I have given them!
The antipasto is a smothering of all things awesome. And by all things awesome I mean chargrilled eggplant, sundried tomatoes, roast capsicum, marinated button mushrooms, marinated artichoke hearts, fried spanish onion and a light sprinkling of parmesan cheese. The combination of flavours was perfect and the light sprinkling of parmesan cheese meant it did not over power the other flavours.
The first step when making The Greek is to fry off some lamb with some rosemary, just enough to seal it. The lamb is scattered over the pizza base along with some quartered cherry tomatoes and creamy chunks of goats cheese. To finish, the pizza is topped with olives and a smattering of minted yoghurt.
This pizza was super yummy, such an amazing and unusual combination of flavours! The minted yoghurt really 'made' the pizza.
OH. EM. GEE. The This Pizza is Winning is seriously winning! An awesome combination of olives, prosciutto, rocket and bocconcini that is lightly topped with marinated artichoke. The best thing about this pizza is how crispy the prosciutto is after cooking which is perfectly complimented by the creamy melted bocconcini. The bocconcini also counters the saltiness of the prosciutto and olives and the rocket proveides a subtle peppery quality.
Ben and Sam do not make their own pizza bases, but really, they don't need to when you can buy a delicious thin base that crisps up really well! They did tell me what brand they are, but I've forgotten. However, I will find out because I want to make my own pizza (did I mention that yet?)
Sam also whipped up a quick salad of rocket, olives, parmesan and balsamic glaze.
Dessert was pure genius. Chocolate coated strawberries, which everyone loves, with the addition of a large shard of white chocolate sticking out the top. Because the shards of white chocolate were cut out in irregular triangle shapes, the whole presentation of the dish looked utterly amazing and it is super simple! But the simplest things are often the best.
All in all, I think I am super lucky to have such amazing friends who cook so well! Great night.