I have improvised a white pizza before, but I thought I would follow an actual recipe this time for Meatless Monday. It was pretty good!. I think I would have liked some greens in there somewhere. Adding cooked spinach to the white sauce, or finely shredding some for on top to just wilt with the heat of the pizza would make it more to my liking, but the boys liked it as is, and so to did the baby girl. I didn't bother with making the dough, and I didn't go to the local NY style pizza place to get their dough, I went to the Publix bakery because it is the easiest for me. If you are feeling like making the effort, please do make your dough from scratch!
New York-Style White Pizza
1 New York-Style Pizza Dough ball 12 ounces (recipe follows, or buy one)
Unbleached high-gluten or bread flour cornmeal, or semolina flour for dusting
1 1/2 Cup ricotta cheese
1/4 Tsp salt
1/4 Tsp dried or chopped fresh thyme
1/8 Tsp coarsely ground black pepper
1/2 Cup White Sauce (recipe follows)
1 Tbl chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
For the white sauce
2 Tbl olive oil
1 small yellow onion diced
2 Clove garlic minced
1/4 Cup eavy cream
1/2 Tsp minced fresh thyme or marjoram
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Place a baking stone on the middle shelf of the oven and preheat on
the highest setting for at least 1 hour. Shape the dough ball using the
toss- and-spin method, stretching it to a diameter of about 12 inches.
The dough should be about 1/4 inch thick and slightly thicker toward the
2. In a bowl, stir together the ricotta, salt, thyme, and pepper.
Remove stone from oven and put dough on the hot surface.
Spread the White Sauce over the surface of the dough, leaving a 1/4-inch
border uncovered. Spread the ricotta mixture evenly over the White Sauce.
3. Carefully return the baking stone to the oven . It
should take about7- 12 minutes to make. When it is done, the crust should
be crisp and slightly charred on the edge and the cheese should be
bubbling and just beginning to caramelize. The underside of the crust
should be brown and crisp, not white and soft.
4. Remove the finished pizza from the oven and garnish it immediately
with the parsley. Let the pizza cool for about 3 minutes before slicing
and serving. If you want a snappier crust, let the pizza cool completely,
then return the individual slices to the hot oven for re-crisping.
To make the white sauce (makes about 1/2 cup)
5. In a heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the
onion and saute for 5 or 6 minutes, or until translucent. Add the garlic
and stir for 1 minute longer. Add the cream, lower the heat to medium-
low, and cook for about 3 minutes, or until the cream thickens and
reduces slightly. Remove from the heat, stir in the thyme, and season to
taste with salt and pepper. Let cool completely before using.
To make the New York-Style Pizza Dough (if you are)
5 Cup (22 1/2 ounces) unbleached high-gluten -or bread flour
1 1/2 Tbl sugar or honey
2 Tsp table salt or 3 1/2 teaspoons kosher -salt
1 1/2 Tsp instant yeast
3 Tbl olive oil or vegetable oil or solid -vegetable shortening
1 3/4 Cup room-temperature water (70°F)
6. With a large metal spoon, stir together all the ingredients into a 4-
quart bowl or the bowl of an electric stand mixer until combined. If
mixing with an electric mixer, fit it with the dough hook and mix on a
low speed for 4 minutes, or until all the flour gathers to form a coarse
ball. Let the dough rest for 5 minutes, then mix again on medium-low
speed for an additional 2 minutes, or until the dough clears the sides
of the bowl and sticks just a little to the bottom. If the dough is too
soft and sticky to hold its shape, mix in more flour by the
tablespoonful. If mixing by hand, repeatedly dip one of your hands or
the spoon into room-temperature water and use it much like a dough hook,
working the dough vigorously into a coarse ball as you rotate the bowl
with your other hand. As all the flour is incorporated into the ball,
about 4 minutes, the dough will begin to strengthen; when this occurs,
let the dough rest for 5 minutes and then resume mixing for an
additional 2 to 3 minutes, or until the dough is slightly sticky, soft,
and supple. If the dough is too soft and sticky to
hold its shape, mix in more flour by the tablespoonful; if it is too
stiff or dry, mix in more water by the tablespoonful.
7. Immediately divide the dough into 3 equal pieces. Round each piece
into a ball and brush or rub each ball with olive or vegetable oil.
Place each ball inside its own zippered freezer bag. Let the balls sit
at room temperature for 15 minutes, then put them in the refrigerator
overnight or freeze any pieces you will not be using the next day.
8. The next day, remove the balls from the refrigerator 2 hours before
you plan to roll them out to take off the chill and relax the gluten.