Tomato Buttered Pizza with Anchovies and Soft Gruyere

October 26, 2011 § 3 Comments

Tomato Buttered Pizza with Anchovies and Soft Gruyere

I made my first attempt at canning at the end of October. It didn’t go exactly as well as expected. I had tomatoes cooking down in my slow cooker for this tomato butter when I realized that the canning rack I bought wasn’t going to fit in my pot. After a bit of tantrum when I realized I wouldn’t be able to actually can the butter, I refrigerated the butter and committed myself to getting through it as quickly as possible. I am still excited to experience my first successful canning process, but I have been plowing through this butter despite my failure.

Anchovies and Tomato Butter
It is definitely more sweet than savory like any other fruit butter (and I cut down the sugar by about half!! which may be a bad idea if you’re looking to actually can it but perhaps it doesn’t matter if the acidity level is unaffected? I still have a lot to learn). I have stirred it into bowls of steel-cut oats and spread it on toast with cream cheese and now I am using it in place of tomato sauce on pizza for something still sweet but a bit more appropriate for dinner. I would definitely like to make the tomato butter again for a proper canning (probably not this year, I can’t imagine finding tomatoes at the farmer’s market in November but who knows! They did show up in the last two weeks of October)  but I would like to do some research to make it a bit more acidic so I can use it as a condiment in place of ketchup. I like the idea of make a winter-appropriate BLT sandwich in the middle of winter using seasonal greens and the tomato butter in place of fresh tomatoes.
Pepperoni and Gruyere Pizza and Tomato Buttered Pizza with Anchovies and Soft Gruyere

I have been working on this pizza dough ever since I first made pizza in my own home this summer. I am sure I have averaged at least one pizza night per week since then, including a week or two of obsessive pizza making after being disappointed by that first dough. Once I finished experimenting (okay, I am not done experimenting, but I am at a point where I am ready to share) with flours, sugars to feed the yeast and the amount of yeast to use, I waited to post my recipe here until I came up with something really unique to top my pizza. I have made a number of breakfast pizzas, a greens and beans pizza, plenty of refrigerator-raiding veggie pizzas and simple pepperoni pizzas for Matt. I think this one is pretty special because the toppings are simple, but a little bit different.

Pepperoni and Gruyere Pizza and Tomato Buttered Pizza with Anchovies and Soft Gruyere

I chose soft gruyere as the cheese because I thought the creaminess would pair well with the sweet tomato butter – like a tangy goat cheese that pairs well with melon or figs. Aged gruyere also works; we generally use it to replace mozzarella on all of Matt’s pizzas because of his lactose intolerance. You could replace the tomato butter with homemade or store-bought apple butter as the tomato butter is definitely more sweet than savory but a little bit spicy. If you don’t like anchovies, the pizza will definitely need some other umami component to balance the sweetness of the fruit butter; sauteed mushrooms might be nice but classic pepperoni works too. Speaking of pepperoni, the pizza on the left side of the pictures is Matt’s and it is the same each week: homemade tomato sauce, aged gruyere, pepperoni and a generous amount of black pepper. Boring, but I usually have a slice.

Pepperoni and Gruyere Pizza

Tomato Buttered Pizza with Anchovies and Soft Gruyere:

for the dough:
– 1/2 cup lukewarm water
– 3/4 tsp active dry yeast
– 1 tsp honey
– 3/4 cup bread flour
– 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
– 1 tsp salt
– 1 tbsp olive oil
– cornmeal (for dusting)
 for the toppings:
– tomato butter
– soft gruyere
– anchovies
– fresh marjoram
Dissolve yeast in lukewarm water and stir in honey to feed the yeast. Combine flours and salt in a large bowl and add the olive to the middle of the bowl. Once the yeast looks frothy (5-10 minutes), stir into a bowl with a wooden spatula. Empty the contents of the bowl onto a clean, floured surface and knead until it gains structure but feel smooth and supple. Place in an oiled bowl, cover with a damp towel and set in a warm place to rise for two hours or set in the refrigerator to rise for 8 hours. Turn dough onto a floured surface and punch the dough. Separate into equal rounds if you are making multiple pizzas. Knead for a few minutes and cover with the towel, allowing to rest for 20 minutes. Preheat oven to its highest temperature (I set mine all the way up to broil. Set out toppings so they are ready to be added. Dust pizza stone with cornmeal. Stretch out round(s) with the backs of your hands to fit the shape of your pizza stone and place on cornmeal-dusted stone. Spoon a thin layer of tomato butter onto the dough. Grate gruyere on top of the dough to cover. Arrange anchovies on top of the cheese. Add black pepper; be generous. Bake for 8-15 minutes (this completely depends on how how hot your oven is) or until the crust is blistered and completely browned and the bottom is stiff (lift the pizza with a spatula to test how stiff it is). Immediately add fresh leaves of marjoram to the pizza and allow to sit for several minutes. Slice and enjoy.
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