Oh, look, ricotta. What can I do with that?
I came home from being away for a few days and opened the fridge to see what might be possible for dinner, and there was a container of ricotta, front and center, staring at me, practically begging. You know you want to use me. I did, not only because I had an idea brewing, but because it had been in there almost too long.
Two experiences contributed to the new concoction I made tonight. New for me anyway.
- While in D.C. this past weekend, we stopped for a bite to eat at a pizza place and were intrigued with the one that had pickles on it! That’s right, pickles along with ham, pulled pork, feta cheese and a bit of mustard. They call this a pizza, and I’ll play along. It has a crust like a pizza, is round like a pizza, and has creamy, melted cheese on it like a pizza. The rest is a stretch, but it didn’t matter because it was totally delicious. The server described it as an “open sandwich.” Put whatever you want on a pizza crust. Hmmm.
- Claudia and I had a conversation about pie vs. galette. I think of galette as the free form version of pie, I said. To me pie has more fruit than galette, she said. Deeper maybe, ok, fair, I said. Look at us, she said. 🙂 Claudia made a plum pie. The sticky dough made with gobs of butter was hard to work with, hard to make pretty, but oh how amazing it must have tasted. I could only dream about it because she lives in Germany. I’m sure it’s long gone.
So here I was thinking free form and wanting to do something with my must-be-used ricotta when I saw it in the fridge. That’s all there was at first.
Okay. Start with a pizza dough, which we have discussed in my pizza pile post https://anunboringpath.com/2018/07/31/pizza-pile/. While the dough was resting I gathered basil and oregano from the garden (oh, how glorious basil and oregano are in August!!) and cut it up, took out the ricotta, looked for mozzarella but didn’t happen to have any so settled on a small chunk of asiago (it’s a stronger cheese – don’t need too much, but the flavor works), grated that, chopped up a red pepper and a couple handfuls of spinach, defrosted the half a can of Don Pepino pizza sauce I had put in a jar the last time we made pizza, and took out the jar of grated parmesan that I keep ready to go in the fridge. I oiled the pan with olive oil and sprinkled cornmeal on it. I’m hungry, worked fast.
Ready. I rolled out the rested dough bigger than my pizza pan by about 4” all around. Truth be told, that’s just how big it rolled out. Looked good to me. Not overly picky when I am hungry. I set the pan on the first thing that caught my eye on the counter that would raise it up high enough for the dough to hang down, which happened to be my teapot without its lid waiting by the sink to be rinsed, which you cannot see in this photo, but trust me, the teapot is under the pan and the dough is hanging down the sides.
True confession: I was just making dinner for me and Samuel. That’s all. This is the point where I realized the idea might work and it might be yummy and I ought to be taking some pictures so I could share it!
Here it is with the pizza sauce, then the spinach, basil and oregano, then the red pepper, then small blobs of ricotta.
Next came the salt and pepper and parmesan.
Then the grated asiago. I began flipping the sides up. This is the part that reminds me of a galette. Wherever it lands, it lands. After it’s done, the whole thing is fabulous, but the part encased in the dough all around the edges is extra fabulous. But I am getting ahead of myself. And I know I’m being terribly UN-EXACT this time. So sorry. Been away. Hungry. Slacker!
When all the sides are flipped up, it looked like this.
And when it has cooked until it’s almost done, it looks like this.
I like mine a little darker and the bottom crust a little crisper, so I slid it off the pan right onto the oven rack and in five more minutes ended up with this.
Seems to be a combination of pizza, Stromboli, calzone, lasagna and galette.
- Round, thin crust, creamy cheese on top like a pizza.
- Crust enveloping cheese like a Stromboli or calzone.
- Ricotta to remind me of lasagna or calzone.
- All in a free form that still reminds me of a galette.
I have no idea what to call this! But it was divine. Note past tense verb was.