A tender flatbread topped with herbed oil, salty prosciutto, shallots, pears, creamy brie, thyme and finished with balsamic glaze. It’s the perfect artisan pizza!
Yes… FINALLY another pizza recipe! I’m super, SUPER excited to share this one with you along with the dozens of others I have waiting in the wings. As you know, pizza is my all-time FAVORITE food.
It’s so versatile and easy. If you can dream it up, you can “pizzafy” it.
It’s funny as the food that is my all-time favorite, that I eat in some fashion every day, I rarely post recipes of. It’s not for lack of want, it’s for lack of self-control to take the photos and write up the recipe.
This is where “stomach logic” takes over and I’m like “Nope, I need to eat this now”.
But now that my wood-fired pizza oven is almost ready to go (just finishing up the stand fabrication), I’ll be sharing lots of recipes on the blog
So What is a Pizza?
We all have our interpretation of what it is. Some pizza purists are very strict and say that the dough must be made using a high-gluten flour and topped with savory toppings. These are the anti-pineapple, anti-dessert pizza folks. I half agree with them on their thinking.
I consider pizza this:
“Pizza is a dish made starting with a yeasted dough base that is spread or stretched out, covered in assorted toppings* albeit savory and sweet, and baked at a higher temperature until the dough and toppings are cooked through. *Toppings may be placed on before or post baking.”
But what about “Cookie Pizzas”?
No, that is not a pizza. That is a cookie topped with stuff, cut like a pie. It is not a pizza… ever.
Today I’m sharing with you a super light and delicious artisan pizza that is perfect for a lighter fare or for when you want to fancy-schmancy up your pizza. Plus this is perfect for when we no longer have to remain 6′ apart from our family and friends! This is a great appetizer as well!
Ingredients Needed For This Artisan Pizza
This recipe starts with you already have made the pizza dough using my Simple Pizza Dough Recipe. If you haven’t made it or don’t have time, it’s okay to cheat and buy one from a local pizzeria. You want a 300-400 gram dough ball.
From The Fridge
- Prosciutto – I find the saltiness from the ham pairs perfectly with the rest of the ingredients.
- Pear – I used an Asian pear but you can use any other harder pear
- Brie – I loved how brie just melted into gooey puddles on the pizza. You can also use any other type of soft cheese. Goat cheese would work as well
- Pizza Dough Ball
From The Pantry
- Shallots – I found that the milder flavor married beautifully with the other flavors
- Balsamic Vinegar – I’m talking REALLY good, it’s like syrup, stuff. I LOVE this stuff. It’s pricey but you use very little of it at time.
- Oils – Olive oil and Canola Oil
- Fresh Thyme leaves
Seriously, if you’re Pizzaventurous as I like to call it, you’ll LOVE this pizza! The pears caramelize, the prosciutto crisps up and that cheese is just ridiculous!
Get Your Dough in the Pan
Once your pizza dough has performed the first rise, you want to get it set in the flatbread pan.
- Bring the dough to room temperature if it was in the fridge. Add a tsp or two of canola or light oil to flatbread pan and brush it out coating the bottom and the sides. It just needs to lightly coat it
- Place the proofed dough ball onto a lightly floured surface and stretch out into at least a 12″x3-4″ rectangle. It’s OK if you don’t get it stretched the whole way.
- Place the stretched dough onto the plan and gently push/nudge it out towards the edges.
- Cover with a lightly sprayed piece of plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place until the dough rises a bit more and stretches out towards the ends. ~30-60 minutes.
Chef’s Tip For Stretching Pizza Dough
- If your dough is cold, bring it to room temperature before trying to stretch.
- If the dough snaps back and you find you’re finding that you’re struggling to stretch it, let it go. Just cover with a lightly sprayed piece of plastic wrap.
Let’s Make Pear & Prosciutto Pizza!
- Once the dough has rested, remove the plastic wrap and stretch the dough (if needed) towards the edges of the pan.
- Drizzle on the olive oil on top, top with red pepper flakes, and half of the thyme leaves.
- Next, add the slices of prosciutto and sliced shallots.
- Next, add the slices of pears and chunks of brie cheese.
- Sprinkle on the black pepper, rest of the red pepper flakes and, if desired a little more thyme leaves (*optional)
- Bake on the lower third rack on top of a pizza stone for 7-9 minutes. At this point, the dough should be almost fully cooked and golden brown.
- Move the pizza to the upper third rack and finish baking for another minute or two or until the cheese is fully melted.
- Remove from the oven and place the pizza on a cutting board and add the finishing touches.
Dressing The Pizza
To truly set this pizza over the top, add the rest of the fresh thyme leaves and then drizzle on a balsamic glaze.
Not all Balsamic Vinegar is the same
So I’m a HUGE snob when it comes to balsamic vinegar. I want one, that is thick, syrup-like, and almost has a sweet undertone.
The thinner ones are great when you want say a vinegar and oil salad but when you want a finishing glaze you really want a good quality, thick, balsamic vinegar.
This is my FAVORITE and yes, it’s an investment but it’s one of those where a little goes a long way.
This pizza was/is so unbelievable. It’s light and delicate but it’s full of incredible flavors. This is gourmet pizza for sure!
Ask the Pizzaiola
- I don’t have that flatbread pan, can I use a rimmed baking pan? Absolutely! I put it all in the notes of the recipe. You have 2 options as well. My Simple Pizza Dough recipe makes 2 dough balls so you could make a full-size pan pizza using both dough balls or just use one and shape it into the 15×5″ flatbread.
- Can I make this as a round pizza? Absolutely! The shape is irrelevant in this pizza, to be honest. I just went with the flatbread style as I love that pan.
- I don’t have a pizza stone, is that an issue? No, but I would say add one to your wishlist. You would still cook the pizza on the lower third rack. It just may take a few more minutes to bake.
- Cheese – you can use any super soft cheese. Goat Cheese, Chevre, Camembert, any triple cream
- Onions – if you don’t have shallots you can use a thinly sliced red onion or Vidalia onion
- Herbs – if you don’t have fresh thyme you can use dried but only a 1/2-3/4 tsp at most. You can also substitute Savory, Marjoram or Oregano
- Meats – Thinly shaved Black Forest Ham, Thin cooked slices of bacon
For the 5×15” flatbread pan
- 1 Simple Pizza Dough ball mixed through the first rise *see below
- 1 1/2 Tbl olive oil, divided
- 2 tsp canola oil
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes, divided
- 5–7 slices prosciutto
- 1 medium shallot, sliced thin
- 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- 3–4 fresh thyme sprigs, leaves removed, divided
- 4 ounces of brie, roughly chopped
- Balsamic oil (really good quality) for a drizzle
Simple Pizza Dough
- 1 packet platinum instant yeast (2 1/4 tsp or 1/3 of a 2-ounce block (so .66 ounces of cake yeast)
- ~350 grams of water or 1 1/2 cups * if using the same day use warm water(105-115 degrees F/40-46 degrees C). If fermenting overnight in the fridge use cold water
- 1 tsp white sugar
- 1/8 cup olive oil (about 2 Tbl)
- ~475 grams or 3 – 3 1/2 cups 00 Pizza flour or any high gluten bread flour, plus extra as needed
- 1 tsp sea salt
Simple Pizza Dough
- Proof the yeast by pouring the yeast and sugar into the water in a bowl of your stand mixer and gently stir until the yeast dissolves. *Cake yeast you make have to break up with your fingers
- Let the yeast and water stand until foamy, about 5 minutes*. If using cold water, just mix and move to the next step as the yeast won’t quite bloom with cold water.
- Once the yeast has bloomed, add in the flour and fit your mixer with a dough hook. Mix on low just until loosely combined. Add in the salt while the mixer is running stopping if need be to scrape down the sides. After 3 minutes of mixing, drizzle in the oil.
- Mix until a soft, smooth elastic ball form; ~8-10 minutes. The dough should pull away from the sides of the bowl but still be wet/tacky to the touch. If needed, add a Tbl of flour or so to help combine. If it’s too dry, you may need to add a few Tbl of water. Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a very lightly floured surface. Give it a few kneads to form the dough into a smooth ball tucking the ‘ends’ underneath.
- Allow the dough to rest, covered for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, using very lightly floured hands, knead the dough gently by hand just to smooth it out and divide it into smaller portions. If using the same day, divide the dough in half, shape as balls and put in 2 separate bowls (covered), and allow to rise until doubled in size; about 60-90 minutes. If you’re placing in the fridge, divide into 2 equal-sized balls, and place in 2 bowls covered with plastic wrap (just be sure it has enough room to rise) and refrigerate (covered) overnight. The slow cold rise will help build the flavors.
Make The Pizza
- Once the dough has doubled in size, pan the dough. *Bring the dough to room temperature if it was in the fridge before using.
- Add the canola oil to flat pizza pan and, using a pastry brush, brush the bottom and sides with the canola oil.
- Place the dough ball on a lightly floured board and stretch out to a 12-13″x3-5″ rectangle. it’s OK if it doesn’t stretch out first. You just want to stretch it out into a rectangle.
- Place the lightly stretched dough to the oiled pizza pan and gently press it out towards the edges as much as possible without ripping it. If the dough springs back it’s ok. Cover the pan and dough with sprayed plastic wrap and set aside for 30 minutes to an hour or until the dough has puffed and spread out more towards the edges.
- Preheat the oven to 550F placing the rack on the lower third of the oven with a pizza stone on it. Add one more rack to the upper third. As the oven is heating up, uncover the pizza, and gently push the dough out towards the edges of the flatbread pan.
- Drizzle 1 Tbl of olive oil on top of the dough followed by half of the red pepper flakes and half of the thyme leaves. Place the prosciutto, shallots, and pears on the pizza. Add pieces of the brie around the pear, the black pepper, and the rest of the red pepper flakes. Drizzle with the remaining olive oil.
- Place the flatbread pan on the pizza stone (lower third rack) and bake for 7-9 minutes or until the crust has turned golden brown. Move the pizza to the upper rack if the cheese has not melted and allow to bake for 1 minute more.
- Remove the pizza from the oven, carefully remove the pizza from the pan to a cutting board (or cooling rack if not serving immediately). Drizzle on balsamic oil and the rest of the thyme leaves. Cut with a Pizza Rocker (it’s the easiest) and serve.
*Prep time does not include making the pizza dough
- You have 2 choices, you can use a single dough ball and stretch the dough out to a 5×15” rectangle OR double the recipe (2 dough balls, 3 Tbl oil, etc) and stretch the dough out to cover the whole pan.
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