Sorry folks, getting a bit of a late start posting today. Someone wouldn’t go down for her morning nap. I won’t say who… but she’s two months old and refuses to take a soother (whyyyyy? Mums on the internet, help me out!).
I’m a big fan of eggs on pizza (see also: Breakfast Pizza, Pizza in Purgatory). Not only are they an easy addition- just crack ’em on and go- but they also add a decadent, oozy element to just about any pizza. The golden yolk melts out and creates a sauce, almost like a hollandaise, but without the actual work.
Eggs are also very versatile. They will befriend just about any flavour you pair them with, as long as you keep your flavours balanced and in check (salt, acidity, etc.)
As you can see on my instagram, pesto season is here in full force. The mound of basil in that picture is only about 2/3 of what I have in my garden. After just a few days, the plants I trimmed back so dramatically are already bouncing back with vigor.
I love basil pesto, I do. But with abundance comes (gasp), over-saturation. I know! I am over-pesto’d at the moment. I thought it couldn’t happen.
Well, over basil pesto’d. As Chelsea showed us last week, pesto doesn’t have to begin and end with basil alone. Time for sun-dried tomato pesto!
My love for this sauce/spread started when someone brought me a jar of this Mezzetta Sun Ripened Tomato Pesto as part of a housewarming gift. The jar, served with crackers and goat cheese, disappeared in a matter of minutes. (Note: If you don’t feel like making your own sun-dried tomato pesto for this recipe, just buy that one, it is a winner!) (and I’m not being paid to say that! Mezzetta is the bee’s knees!)
When my local grocery store stopped carrying it, I took matters into my own hands and started experimenting with my own recipe, which you will find below.
The resulting pesto is so bright and punchy with flavour, I could put it on just about anything. Put on a crispy pizza crust with some warm goat cheese and fresh basil, and you have yourself a perfect little meal. Top it with an egg… and you have breakfast (or lunch, or dinner).
|Sun-dried Caprese Pizza|| || |
- Sun-dried Tomato Pesto:
- 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
- ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup fresh basil leaves
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- ¼ cup olive oil
- Pizza Dough:*
- 1⅓ cups warm water
- 2¼ tsp instant yeast
- 3¾ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 1 Tbsp salt
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- Coarse semolina, for dusting
- 100g goat cheese
- 2 eggs
- Fresh basil, for garnish
- To make dough: Preheat oven to 200°F. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine water and yeast and let sit for 5 minutes until yeast has dissolved and mixture is frothy. Add in flour, sugar, salt, and olive oil; knead on a low speed for 5-10 minutes until dough has formed. It should be elastic and pull away from the sides of the bowl. Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl; cover with aluminum foil, and place bowl in the oven. TURN OVEN OFF. Let the dough rise in the warm oven for about 2 hours until it has doubled in size. Divide into two balls of dough, then use one for the remainder of this recipe. (Prepare another pizza with the second ball of dough, or store in the fridge for another night.)
- Remove dough from oven, place a pizza stone or heavy baking sheet into the oven. Crank the heat on the oven up to 500 degrees. Let the stone heat for at least 30 minutes in the oven.
- Place all pesto ingredients in a food processor and blend until a paste forms, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed.
- Dust a flat surface with some coarse semolina and stretch out the portion(s) of pizza dough you will be using. Take the heated pizza stone/tray out of the oven and transfer the dough directly on to it. This will cause the dough to start cooking right away, ensuring a nice and crispy crust. Spread a thin layer of pesto on the dough following by a crumbling of goat cheese. Use a spoon to gently press down two places where you would like the egg yolks to land- this isn't 100% necessary, but it will help them from sliding around as you place the pizza in the oven, if you aren't confident in your level handed abilities. Crack both eggs on to the pizza, over the small depressions you have made.
- Bake pizza for 8-10 minutes, until the edges of the crust are lightly golden and the eggs are just set- the eggs will continue to cook for a minute or two after being removed from the oven so if you're a fa of a runny yolk, take it out just before you think it's ready.
- Serve immediately, garnished with fresh basil leaves.