Tuesday 22 November 2016

Pizza with Belgian endive, toasted pine nuts and Pecorino cheese

15 minutes to prepare  Serves 4


Pizza with endive is a fragrant stuffed pizza, typical of Naples area.
It is often prepared during the Christmas period and it is served either as a side dish, or as an appetizer, if it is cut in small pieces.

There are many versions of this recipe: according to the most common, pizza is stuffed with a filling made of endive -previously cooked in a pan -, anchovies, capers and olives. The bitter endive salad and the strong flavor of anchovies, capers and olives compensate very well the delicate taste of the bread dough, making this a great finger food, rustic and hearty.

The recipe I present you today is a slight modification of this traditional dish.
In order to make it more flavourful, I combined the original filling with some Pecorino cheese and I used it to season a flat pizza, just to shrink the cooking time. The result was simply amazing!

Here are ingredients for a 4-serving recipe (4 pizzas):

1 kg pizza dough divided into 4 balls (you may find here my pizza dough recipe)
500 g Belgian endive
100 g Pecorino cheese
2 cloves garlic
10 anchovy fillets in oil
30 pitted Kalamata olives
10 capers
50 g pine nuts
EVO oil
salt and pepper

  1. When you are ready to bake the pizzas, take the dough out of the fridge, leaving at least 1 hour anh half for it to warm up and get pliable
  2. Meanwhile, braise the garlic with 2 tablespoons of EVO oil until it becomes golden, then add the Belgian endive. Roast them for 5 minutes to make them tasty, then remove the garlic, cover with a lid and go on with the cooking for about 15 minutes
  3. Toast pine nuts in a hot pan and keep them aside
  4. Remove the lid and make the water of Belgian endive to evaporate completely. Then, chop both capers and pitted olives and add them to the endive. Go on with the cooking for 5 minutes more
  5. Add toasted pine nuts and stir to mix
  6. Cut Pecorino into thin slices with a grater
  7. Preheat oven to 270°C (or, better, as far as oven temperatures go)
  8. Generously dust the counter with semolina flour. Make the pizzas one at a time. Dip your hands in flour and lift a ball of dough. Very gently lay the dough across your fists and carefully stretch it by bouncing the dough in a circular motion on your hands, carefully giving it a little stretch with each bounce. Once the dough has expanded outward, move to a full toss. When the dough is stretched out to your satisfaction (about 25 cm in diameter), lay it on the baking tray covered by baking paper
  9. Lightly top it with the slices of Pecorino cheese and sprinkle the endive with toasted pine nuts over. Season with 3 tablespoons of EVO oil and freshly ground pepper
  10. Bake the pizza for about 10 minutes. If the top gets done before the bottom, you will need to move the baking tray to a lower self before the next round
  11. When the crust of the pizza is golden, remove the pizza from the oven and transfer it to a wooden cutting board. Buon appetito!

Nutrition Facts are detailed in the table below. Data is provided per serving.

“Non saccio che carole e scarole mmc jate contanno, e se vede proprio ca site Napoletano de Puglia.”
Ferdinando Galiani, Del dialetto napoletano

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