I need a vacation. The past three weeks have been pure craziness at work. I’m dreaming of Excel and PowerPoint. You know that is a sure sign that you are OD-ing. I hate dreaming about PowerPoint. Nothing angers me more than waking, feeling the stressful tension in my shoulders and realizing the night has provided me with no restful escape from the day. It’s a sure way to make me grumpy and just sours my mood for the day. It is also a sure way to keep me out of the kitchen.
At 5 o’clock, or whenever I manage to wrap things up for the day, I pack my laptop into my backpack, collect my things and head for home. After a few minutes of bustling around the house and petting my pup, the laptop comes out and work begins anew. At some point, I’ll retreat to the kitchen and find a few minutes for myself when I can focus on the things I want to focus on, my mind calmed by the rhythmic sounds of the knife hitting the cutting board. One particular night, the fruit fly collection I’ve been working on had grown to the point where action was needed – immediately! The beautiful heirloom tomatoes I’d picked up at the market were intoxicating the winged creatures and with a wave of my hand over the tomatoes, they dashed off in a wave.
Knowing my time was limited on this particular evening, I took a little help from Trader Joe’s and grabbed some pre-made pizza dough and some fresh mozzarella on my drive home from the office. I snipped what are likely some of the last leaves from my basil plant as it gasps in the dry, insane heat. No amount of water can save this year’s poor attempt at a garden… With just a few simple steps, one of the prettiest pizzas I have ever created sat ready for the oven. Now to find a bottle of wine…
Work still calls my name, but I’m taking the night off. I’m trying to enjoy the last bit of summer and I might have to make this a few more times to ensure I’ve satiated my taste for ripe, fresh tomatoes. Ha – if that ever happens, I’ll let you know!
Fresh Heirloom Margherita Pizza
recipe: jb’s pour house
1 head of garlic, separated into cloves and peeled
1/4 c. olive oil
3-4 heirloom tomatoes
Fresh mozzarella, in whatever form you prefer, drained
1 prepared pizza dough
Salt and pepper
about 1/4 c. basil leaves, finely chopped
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place garlic cloves and olive oil in a small oven-proof dish with a lid. Roast for 40-45 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool. When ready to proceed, blend garlic and olive oil in a food processor until no large pieces of garlic remain. Slice tomatoes in half and gently squeeze to remove seeds. Slice into 1/4″ slices.
Increase oven to 500 degrees. Lightly flour a work surface and roll dough out to desired shape. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes. Remove dough from oven and spread roasted garlic oil/paste over the dough. Place tomato slices across the dough. Season with salt and pepper and scatter mozzarella over the top. Return to oven and bake for 10 minutes. Mozzarella should be melted and the crust should be golden brown.
Scatter finely chopped basil over the top, cut into slices, and enjoy.
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