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Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - Printable Version

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Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - cjs - 09-02-2012

Put your feet up - this is a long, long post.

Fennel-and-Sweet-Onion Pizza with Green Olives – F&W magazine
(this is the recipe for the pizza sans the dough recipe -

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
1 fennel bulb, cut into 8 wedges
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup Pernod
1 cup chicken stock
Freshly ground pepper
1 very large sweet onion, thinly sliced
1 pound shredded Trugole or fresh Asiago cheese
8 large pitted green Sicilian olives, coarsely chopped
Basil leaves, for garnish

MEANWHILE MAKE THE TOPPINGS In a skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the fennel and cook over moderate heat, turning once, until lightly browned, 5 minutes.

Remove from the heat and add the wine and Pernod. Return the pan to moderate heat and cook until the liquid has evaporated, about 2 minutes. Add the chicken stock to the skillet.

Cover and simmer over moderately low heat, turning the fennel once, until very tender and the liquid is nearly evaporated, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer the fennel to a cutting board and coarsely chop it.

Meanwhile, in another skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the onion, cover and cook over moderate heat, stirring once or twice, until softened, about 3 minutes. Uncover and cook until the onion is caramelized, about 20 minutes.

Add a few tablespoons of water to the skillet to prevent scorching.

Preheat the oven to 500°. Preheat a pizza stone as close to the oven bottom as possible for 20 minutes.

Punch down the dough and divide it into 4 balls. Set the balls on an oiled baking sheet and cover with oiled plastic wrap. Let stand for 15 minutes.

On a floured surface, roll or stretch one dough ball to a 10-inch round. Set the round on a floured pizza peel, shaking it gently so it doesn’t stick.

Brush the edge of the dough with oil. Add one-fourth of the cheese, followed by one-fourth each of the braised fennel, caramelized onion and olives.

Slide the pizza onto the stone and bake until bubbling on top and the crust is deeply golden, 8 to 10 minutes.

Transfer the pizza to a cutting board, sprinkle with basil and cut into wedges. Repeat with the remaining dough and toppings.

My version and steps to get there –

Spicy Hot Italian Turkey Sausage

First made 7/26/12 – so very good and spicy

4 1/4 lb. ground turkey
3/4 lb. bacon
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
Heaping tablespoon fennel seed
3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
Heaping teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons cold water
Casings, medium hog or not (I prefer bulk sausage)

Combine the turkey, bacon, and remaining ingredients except water in a large bowl. Grind through a 3/8-inch plate. Moisten with the water and mix until well blended.

If using casings, stuff and tie at 5-inch intervals.
If leaving for bulk sausage, divide into amounts that work for your family.

Adapted from Hot Links and Country Flavors, Bruce Aidells and S. Kelly.

The fennel step:
I’m not real big on licorice flavors, but I do enjoy the subtle flavor of fennel, so I used ½ cup dry white wine (actually Noilly Prat) instead of the ¼ cup white wine + ¼ cup pernod. Otherwise, followed the instructions.

The onion step:
For the first time used my mandolin on the onions and wow, what a nice different with the really thin sliced. Otherwise followed the instructions.

My pizza was 4 oz. of dough rather than the 1 lb. called for (Batali’s which I love working with), so I had lots of extra fennel, not too much extra onion and maybe half of the 8 oz. of sausage left.

I also used 2.5 oz. of mozzarella + 3 oz. Asiago cheese – what a nice combination of flavors.

I’m not a big green olive fan, but I’m glad I went with them – what a great tangy/sharp flavor they added to the pizza. Crap, just realized I forgot the basil…………..for heaven’s sake. 

Thinking about using the l/os (fennel, green olives, onions, sausage, etc.) in a frittata or a quesadilla……

Here is the link to F&W’s entire recipe:

And here is the dough, which does sound like it should be made – I just have so much pizza dough in the freezer right now.

F&W’s dough:

1 package active dry yeast (1/4 ounce)
1 teaspoon honey
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup brown ale
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt

MAKE THE DOUGH In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the yeast, honey and 1/4 cup of warm water. Let stand until foaming, about 4 minutes. Add the 2 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour and the whole-wheat flour, ale, olive oil, salt and 1/2 cup of water and mix at medium speed until a smooth dough forms, about 5 minutes. Transfer the dough to a work surface and knead for 2 minutes. Lightly oil the bowl, return the dough to it and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise in a warm place until very billowy, about 1 hour.

ready to bake

P.S. the pizza bread was wonderful and easy to work with using the Batali pizza dough –

Whew, it was a great weekend of playing with pizza dough,k that's for sure!!!

Re: Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - Gourmet_Mom - 09-02-2012

I'm confused. Was the sausage on the pizza or in the bread?

Re: Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - cjs - 09-02-2012

the pizza - the bread picture was just a p.s. - had goat cheese and pine nuts in 'tween the layers of dough and herbs and Parm. on top. Just an afterthought picture because it was so fun to work with the Batali pizza dough.

Re: Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - losblanos1 - 09-02-2012

Those look amazing. I'm going to have to branch out and try some new toppings on my pizzas. I used parchment for the first time the other night making the calzones, it sure makes it easier to slide onto the stone/grill.

Re: Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - Gourmet_Mom - 09-02-2012

That's a good idea. I had trouble sliding mine off last night. And the ones before, the toppings wanted to come off during the process. I'm not used to having toppings on there when using the grill, so I didn't think about it.

BTW, thanks for the clarification, Jean. I'm loving the pizza breads! Where do I find the Batali's Pizza Dough?

Re: Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - Trixxee - 09-02-2012

Very nice Jean!

Re: Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - cjs - 09-02-2012

Here you go, Daphne. It's a nice dough.

I'm liking the parchment paper also, Blane - I guess I was always leery it might catch on fire, but so far, so good!!

Re: Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - Harborwitch - 09-02-2012

Jean that pizza looks so good. I have lots of green olives - but no fennel. Sigh.

I'm looking forward to trying the whole wheat dough with the brown ale one of these days.

Re: Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - cjs - 09-03-2012

me too, Sharon.

Re: Fennel & Sweet Onion Pizza w Green Olives - Review - Mare749 - 09-03-2012

Both look delicious! I'm confused about the parchment paper though. You don't use it on the grill, do you?