Tonight, I have a little something for y’all, a favorite quick dinner technique. But first, my auction for Jennie wrapped up last night, and a wonderful person named A won the class for $200. Thank you to A and thank you to everyone who bid, spread the word, and donated to Jennie. I’m giving away jars of goodness with a lot of other wonderful preservers. Get your bid on before Friday!
Do you own a glossy black beauty known as a cast iron skillet? One of the more finicky of the cookware pieces in my home, this pan took some time to fall for. But once you make stove-top pizza in your cast iron skillet, that loving feeling grows and grows. Pizza at home is a new development around here, but the bigger surprise is that you don’t have to crank your oven up to 500° to make a darn good pizza. If you’re looking for an authentic pizza experience, shield your eyes now. But this stove-top pizza is straightforward and satisfies the pizza cravings with any toppings you scrape up from your refrigerator. Start on the stove and finish in the broiler and you get a crunchy crust and warm, gooey cheese. And my 12″ cast iron skillet makes a perfect pizza for two. Here’s where I admit my secret: I’m still using store-bought pizza dough. Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods whole wheat dough. Taking the plunge into homemade yeasty dough is my next step, and feel free to use it in your pizza, but this works for me.
Roll your dough out into a circle. Make sure it is at least as large as your cast iron (or other large OVEN-PROOF skillet). Place your skillet on the stove, add oil and turn eye to medium. Once the pan is hot and the oil is almost smoking, sprinkle in some cornmeal to cover and place your dough into the skillet. If the circle is too big, fold over the edges to create a bit of a thicker crust edge. Turn the eye to medium-low and let cook for a few minutes. Smear pesto on top, add ricotta and shredded mozzarella to cover. Add thin slices of salami and one sliced heirloom tomato. Turn the broiler on high and place your pan in their. Let broil for 2-6 minutes, checking every two minutes. Our pizza normally takes about 5 minutes. The crust gets a bit darker and the tomatoes cook a bit. Take out of the broiler and top with fresh basil. Transfer to a cutting board or platter and let sit for five minutes. Slice and eat!
Warning: a cast-iron skillet does not play well with the acid of tomatoes. If you’re making a saucy pizza, skip the cast iron or be especially careful that no sauce gets on the pan.