Friday, July 23, 2010

Bruschetta Style Cold Pizza

I wasn't sure how this pizza would ultimately turn out with the mix of the dressing soaked tomatoes and the cream cheese...but it blended together nicely. Next time I will put a slightly thicker layer of the bruschetta topping across the top though. I was stretching what I had a bit so I skimped just a wee bit....ehehehe. The marinated tomatoes, onions, and olives made me think about the muffaletta olive salad mixture....pretty sure I'm going to have to try out a cold pizza appetizer that contains a topping like that. I thought I was done making pizza for a while too....rofl....but when an idea strikes you just have to roll with it. ;) Sidenote...I actually mixed a dressing for the tomatoes in this recipe....honestly I usually shortcut this step by using something bottled...either works fine in my humble opinion.

Bruschetta Style Cold Pizza

Pizza Crust
8 oz reduced fat chive and onion cream cheese
1/4 cup non fat sour cream
2 tsp bacon salt
1 small can sliced black olives, drained
1 small sweet onion diced
1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes sliced into halves and quarters
2 green onions chopped
2 tbls olive oil
1.5 tbls diced garlic
1/2 tbls basil
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp thyme
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1 serving turkey pepperoni, cut into smaller pieces

Combine the onion, olives, and cherry tomatoes in a bowl. Whisk together the olive oil, garlic, basil, salt, black pepper, thyme, and balsamic vinegar. Pour over top of the vegetables and mix together. Let marinate in the fridge for a couple hours. You could use the mix immediately, but the flavor will be better if it gets a chance to sit.

Mix up your pizza crust. You can of course substitute a ready made crust from the store or pizza dough if you like.....but mixing your own is pretty easy. I spread half my dough into roughly a 9x13 shape. Don't be afraid to spread it out fairly thin. The other half of the dough I formed into rounds and 4x13 shape. I let the dough rise in a warm place for 30 mins before baking. If you are looking for a thicker crust just let it rise longer. Let the crust cool thoroughly after baking.

Mix together the cream cheese, sour cream, and bacon salt. (If you can't find bacon salt...any seasoned salt will work fine.) Spread across cooled crust. Spread the turkey pepperoni across the cream cheese mixture. Top with tomato/olive mixture. Use a slotted spoon when you are applying your marinated vegetables to your pizza or drain off the dressing before you use them. You want the flavor, but you don't want the vegetables to be drenched when you apply them to the pizza. Top the vegetables with the green onions. Slice with a pizza cutter and chill until ready to serve.

A few pics of the process...
I made a second style bruschetta pizza, but honestly I wasn't that impressed with it. It was ok, but not a must make again. Instead of the cream cheese it had standard mozzarella spread across the crust topped by turkey pepperoni and baked in a 375 oven for about 15 mins. After it was baked I topped it with the tomato mixture. It just seemed kind of boring.

Don't be afraid to spread your crust out nice and long as you don't tear it you are gold. Your dough should be hard to tear though since it should have a nice elastic texture.

Extra crusts made with the other half of my dough. Normally I just do extra rounds, but I wanted to try out the second pizza style above. I do love to pizza crusts on hand in the freezer. A little bbq sauce makes a quick substitute for marinara. I almost always have shredded mozzarella cheese on hand and plenty of things to use as quick toppings.

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