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Maybe I jumped the gun a bit, but a few weekends ago, I grilled pizza up on a bluff. We served it right there, in the damp April evening. It was only about fifty degrees, but green things are emerging from the ground, I thought. Let's celebrate. It's normal spring behavior for me.
Maxwell made a campfire, and fashioned a make-shift grill out of two logs and the grate from our old Weber.
I came up with this concoction of wafer thin, tender new potatoes, gorgonzola, caramelized sweet onions, and prosciutto remembering something similar my mom used to make. Of course, with pizza, the combinations are endless and you don't have to follow my recipe exactly. But for those who have never done this, it's a nice beginning without having to go the tomato sauce and mozzarella route.
We washed ours down with Prosecco and toasted to the warm days to come.
I had some issues with stretching the dough, but that's because I was impatient. The dough recipe we have below isn't something you can whip up in five minutes, but it's worth the effort if you have the time. Otherwise, ask your local pizzeria if they'll sell you a lump of uncooked dough.
Potato, Gorgonzola and Prosciutto Pizza
makes roughly one 12" pizza, or several smaller pizzas
Enough pizza dough for one, roughly, 12" pizza
3 small red-skinned new potatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium yellow onion (Spanish, Vidalia, etc.), sliced
2 teaspoons sugar, honey or maple syrup (anything sweet you have around)
1 tablespoon good-quality olive oil or nut oil for brushing on top of the crust (We used roasted walnut oil from La Tournelle)
3/4 cup crumbled Gorgonzola or other blue-veined cheese
1/4 lb. Prosciutto
Prepare your pizza dough (we have a recipe here), or ask your local pizzeria if you can buy some dough from them: most are friendly and will happily give you a lump of dough for a few bucks. Stretch the dough into one or as many discs as you'd like.
Get a small pot of salted water boiling. Slice the potatoes very thin (1/8" if you can manage) using a very sharp knife, or a mandoline. Carefully drop them into the water and boil for a minute or two, until tender. Remove them carefully, so as not to break them. Lay the slices out on a towel to dry.
Meanwhile, in a medium sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat, and add the sliced onions. Stir occasionally, making sure they don't burn. Turn the heat down if any are crisping. Gradually, the onions will turn a deep brown color. The process can take up to 25 minutes. Toward the end, add the sugar and a splash of water and stir until the liquid is absorbed. Set the caramelized onions aside.
Assemble your pizza. Brush or spoon on the oil, sprinkle the cheese, arrange the onions and potatoes.
Grilling method: Make sure the coals are not raging hot. A hand hovering above the grill should be hot, but not intolerably so. When the grill is ready, carefully place the pizza on the grill and let it cook a few minutes until the cheese melts and the underside of the crust is lightly browned. You may have to cover the grill, or tent the pizza with foil to get the cheese to melt fast enough.
Oven method: Follow the instructions in the Homemade Thin Crust Pizza recipe under "topping and baking the dough" except assemble the pizza as outlined above.
Serve topped with torn bits of prosciutto and a fresh grating of pepper.