Sunday, 3 May 2015

Drunken Mushroom Pizza

I've said it before, pizza at the cottage is always a good idea. As per usual, when you start cooking dinner at 8 pm, intending to use the BBQ, the propane runs out. Not to worry though, the small cabin  oven reaches 500 degrees Fahrenheit surprisingly quick, and at least it wasn't a sweltering hot day. 

Last year at this time there was still ice on the lake and snow on the ground. This weekend, we suntanned, Dave bathed in the lake and we put in the water at the cottage two weeks before May Long = success. It was such a bright and beautiful day for walking. No bugs yet, warm sun, but not sweltering. The dogs were in their element. We found a wonderful surprise on the shady floor of the pine forrest, almost a hundred prairie crocuses! Helllo.... Manitoba's floral emblem. 

Back to the pizza. I first tasted "drunken mushrooms" at Pizzeria Gusto. I make no claim that this  recipe is a good stand-in for a visit to Gusto's patio for the classic Sophia with a class of Santa Margherita. However, drunken mushrooms are easy to make and up the gourmet factor of pizza so long as you have at least one good cheese on hand.

Drunken Mushroom Pizza
Makes one pizza

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 shallot, finely diced
1 lb. "exotic msuchrom medly" (shitakkes, oysters, portabellos), sliced
1 lb. white button mushrooms, sliced
salt and pepper
1 cup red wine
1 cup white wine
splash of whiskey (or whatever you have on hand)

one pizza crust (I used half the cracker thin crust recipe found here)
olive oil
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan
halloumi cheese
baby arugula

Best to prepare the mushrooms ahead of time because they can take up to an hour to cook down and they become more intense when cooled in fridge. Heat olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add shallots and cook until just starting to turn golden.

Add the mushrooms and cook down until they begin to release their liquid, add salt and pepper to help with the process. Once mushrooms have cooked down and are beginning to soften, add red wine, white wine and whiskey. Bring to boil and turn down to a rapid simmer, cook uncovered, stirring occasionally until all liquid is absorbed. Watch closely in the end because the last bit of wine absorbs quickly. 

Mushrooms can be refrigerated until needed. Put pizza stone in the oven and preheat to 500 Fahrenheit. Make dough for curst ( instructions here). To assemble pizza, roll out crust and transfer to a piece of tin foil sprayed with cooking oil (I didn't have parchment at the cabin). Brush crust with olive oil, sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Spread mushrooms over crust and place sliced halloumi over top. Sprinkle olive oil over top, brushing on each piece of halloumi. 

Slide assembled pizza onto a cooking board and slide off onto the pizza stone in oven. Cook pizza until crust is brown, about 15 mins. Remove, slice, and pack on the arugula. Didn't have my truffle oil packed - definitely would've been great on this. 

If like me, you are cooking for mushroom haters and meat eaters, use the other half of the crust recipe to make this meaty creation:

 Basic recipe for this one found here. Which looks better to you???


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