May 23, 2011

May Cooking Challenge: Chicken and Artichoke Pizza

This month's HouseHold6 cooking challenge (see the button on the right?) was to make a pizza without tomato sauce. I knew immediately I wanted to make a pizza with pesto. I LOVE this on a pizza. I don't make it hardly ever since DH isn't so fond of anything other than basic pepperoni or sausage pizza (how boring is that?!). I did end up making two pizzas. One used pesto according to the challenge, the other some leftover quick tomato sauce so my DH would actual eat dinner. ;) Do note that the recipe below does make two pizzas. I'm saving the other half of the pesto that I didn't use to go in pasta for lunch this week.

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup warm water
1 package active dry yeast
1/3 cup yellow corn meal
3 tablespoons olive oil

1 can artichoke hearts, drained well
1 chicken breast, cooked and shredded
3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Spinach-Basil-Walnut Pesto:
1/4 cup walnuts, toasted
3 cups fresh spinach leaves
1 cup fresh basil leaves
2 cloves garlic
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
4 tablespoons shredded parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup olive oil

For the dough, pour the water in a bowl. Add to it the yeast, salt, and olive oil. If you're not sure if your yeast is still good, mix just the yeast and water and let it sit for 5 minutes to check it. To the bowl add the flour and mix with a wooden spoon. With your hands add the corn meal until well mixed. Knead until dough is smooth. Place dough into a greased large bowl. Cover and allow to rise, usually takes me 45 minutes. If time is a crunch for you, you can just let it rest for 15-20 minutes.

While the dough is rising, gather the ingredients for the pesto. In a food processor pulse together the walnuts, spinach, basil, garlic, salt, pepper, cheese, and lemon juice until a paste forms. Drizzle in the olive oil till smooth.

During this time I usually cook the chicken and shred it. I also set the artichoke hearts out to drain before loosely chopping them.

When the dough has risen, preheat the over to 450ºF. Separate the dough into two equal pieces. Using your hands spread the dough out on your chosen pizza pan (I choose to lightly spray my pans with olive oil because have issues).

Top each with pesto followed by mozzarella cheese and then the artichokes and chicken.

Bake at 450ºF for about 15 minutes.

Man, was this pizza GOOD!

It was also good using the quick tomato sauce instead of the pesto, but let's be honest... It wasn't nearly as sensational as the pesto version. :D


Give Peas A Chance said...

looks yummy!!!


I love Pesto. Your pesto pizza looks amazing!

Heather said...

Yum! Pesto is amazing!

LAS8704 said...

I love artichokes on pizza! Looks delicious!