1) We can eat it.
2) Our child does not really like to eat it, but she loves to make different versions of it, which is often good enough for me.
3) You can make a "pizza" (or what I think of loosely as a pizza) with a million different ingredients, so it tastes deliciously different each time. And I suppose, while you are at it, you could come up with a million different names for these dishes too, but I could not even choose a name for my daughter, so I won't go there.
So, for a fresh, summery twist on pizza, and a really fun, productive way to spend some time in the kitchen with your kids, try this simple, speedy and super scrumptious recipe:
- Preheat your oven to 475 degrees.
- Sprinkle a work surface with flour and roll out your pizza dough into desired shape and size. (We get our dough at any of the four pizza joints nearby, but you can also buy pizza dough either frozen or fresh in most supermarkets these days, or make your own.) You can get creative right from this first step on: You can make a traditional large round pizza or several small, individual ones; you can stretch them into rectangles or squares or ovals too. Place your pizza dough shapes onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper to make your life easy. Prick with a fork all over (kids love this part too) and season with salt and pepper. Bake in oven for about 8-12 minutes, maybe a bit more if your pizza is one large shape.
- When your dough looks golden brown, and crunchy, remove from oven, drizzle lightly with olive oil and top with fresh ricotta cheese (or crumbled blue cheese, feta, goat, smoked gouda, fresh mozzarella, burrata, pecorino, parmigiano, or whatever you prefer). Place pizza back in the oven for 2 more minutes, so the cheese heats up and begins to melt into that delicious fresh baked pizza dough.
- Remove from oven and top with chopped fresh herbs like basil, parsley, mint, thyme, lavender and sage. We like to add some baby dinosaur kale or chard too, since we are miraculously managing to grow some at home. I also love watercress but Lina finds it too "spicy." (The benefit with making several smaller pizzas here is that each can be different, so you can sample many in one meal.)
- Add one more drizzle of olive oil over the herbs, season again with salt and pepper, cut and serve.
- To take this dish to a whole other level, try adding a drizzle of honey and / or some fresh sliced stone fruit like plums, nectarines, peaches, or, if you have undying patience, my favorite, pitted sliced cherries. Dried fruit like golden raisins or figs taste fantastic as well. Grilled vegetables, if you have some lying around, are also a delicious addition.
- Alternatively, bits of sliced ham, bacon, prosciutto, chorizo, or salami can add a whole new dimension and loads of extra flavor and protein.
Serve and enjoy immediately, or pack for a perfect beach picnic.