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Spring Vegetable Pizza

Recipe kindly provided by James at smokeyardkitchen.com

INGREDIENTS

For the Pizza Dough (courtesy of Pizza Pilgrims)

875g x strong white flour
500g x water
1.5g x dried yeast
25g x salt

For the Bianca sauce

25g x unsalted butter
25g x plain flour
300ml x milk
4 x garlic cloves
Pinch of salt

For the Pizza

1 x pizza base
1 x portion of bianca sauce
40g x pizza mozzarella
1/2 x courgette
4 x asparagus spears
4 x sun dried tomatoes
4 x basil leaves
Handful of rocket leaves
10g x Parmesan
salt and pepper
Fine semolina

To make the pizza dough, place all of the ingredients in a mixing bowl. If using a stand mixer, set to speed 2 and allow to mix for 10 minutes. If mixing by hand, bring the ingredients together to form a dough then knead for 10 minutes, either way the dough should be smooth and elastic.

Place the dough back in the bowl, cover with clingfilm and allow to prove for 1 hour. Once the dough has proved, give if another quick knead for 10 seconds and the divide evenly into 6 dough balls, the should weigh approximately 250g each. Depending on how many pizzas you want to make (one dough ball is enough to make one 30cm pizza) now is the time to freeze and dough you will not be using, place any spare dough balls into separate freezer bags and freeze until needed, once defrosted continue to follow the recipe. Place the dough balls on a lightly floured tray, cover with clingfilm and allow to prove again for at least 6 hours or even overnight, remembering to leave space between the dough balls for them to grow as they prove.

To make the bianco sauce, place the butter in a saucepan over a low heat and finely grate in the garlic. Allow the garlic to cook gently in the butter for a minute but be careful not to burn. Add the flour and beat to combine with the butter, keep beating the mixture for a minute to begin to cook out the flour. Gradually add the milk to the pan and keep beating, don’t worry if it looks lumpy at this stage just keep going and adding the milk slowly and it will come together. Once all the milk has been added you should a thick, smooth white sauce, continue to cook for another couple of minutes to finish cooking out the flour, season to taste and remove from the heat. Allow the mixture to cool and divide into six, each portion is enough for one pizza, so again you can freeze whatever you aren’t using.

Set up your Big Green Egg for indirect cooking and a temperature of 600°F/315°C. Place the plate setter in the feet up position with the grid on top, if you have a grill extender place this on the grill with the pizza stone on top, the idea is to get the pizza stone as high as possible into the dome, but if you haven’t got an extender then place the pizza stone directly on the grid. Open the bottom vent fully and use the daisy wheel to control the temperature.

To shape the pizza base, lightly dust a pizza peel or flat baking tray with plenty of semolina, this will help to slide the pizza onto the stone and give a nice crunchy texture to the base. Place the dough ball in the centre of the pizza peel, lightly dust your hands with flour and begin to press the dough from the centre outwards, continue to press from the centre outwards to begin to create a evenly thin round base with approximately a 1cm crust. At this stage give the base a quick shake to check it hasn’t stuck, if it has now is the time to gently lift the base from the pizza peel and add more semolina.

Once you are happy with the base, evenly spread the bianca sauce over the base remembering to leave the crust. Finely grate half the Parmesan over the base of the pizza.

Prep the toppings by slicing the asparagus, shaving the courgette into ribbons and tearing the sundried tomatoes, mozzarella and basil. Scatter the toppings evenly over the base finishing with the mozzarella, season with a little salt and pepper and a drizzle of oil from the sundried tomatoes.

Once the Egg is up to temperature remember to burp the Egg by lifting the dome a few centimetres for five seconds before opening fully. Slide the pizza onto the stone and close the Egg, leave for 5 minutes before checking, again remembering to burp the Egg first. Cook to your preferred doneness, but the pizza should take 6-8 minutes at that temperature.

When the pizza is ready, remove from the Egg and allow to cool for a minute, slice, finely grate over the remainder of the Parmesan and scatter over some fresh rocket leaves.

Enjoy!

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