I love it when I can turn Anders on to new and/or previously unloved foods. Much of our experience of food comes from our earliest introduction as children and it seems that taste memory is the longest memory. He must have had a bad introduction to anchovy as a child and hated it because he just cannot abide the stuff. Well he couldn’t until he had this pizza. Still, I can see how a child would be unenthusiastic about anchovies – salty, oily, and fishy. Lucky for me I wasn’t introduced to this taste trilogy until I was in college. A Bulgarian friend gave me a slice of fresh bread with butter and anchovies sprinkled with lemon juice. It was a delight and I have loved it ever since.
This pizza made an equal convert out of Anders: anchovies, with lemon slices, mozzarella, goat cheese and caramelized onions. The look on his face when I mentioned it – consternation. The look after his first bite – rhapsody!
- 1 12-14 inch pizza dough
- 4 cups chopped onions
- 2 tbs + 1 tsp chopped thyme
- 6 cloves garlic
- 4 oz goat cheese
- 8 oz mozzarella
- 2 tsp lemon zest
- 1 large lemon sliced very thinly (as thin as your sharpest knife will allow)
- 12 fillets anchovies (the boneless variety)
- 1 cup arugula, washed and dried
- Olive oil (2 tbs + 1 tsp)
- Place 2 tbs olive oil and onions in large skillet and cook on medium heat until caramelized. This should take about 20 minutes. Halfway through, add the chopped thyme and for cloves of the garlic (finely chopped of pressed) and salt and pepper to taste. When done, remove from heat and set aside.
- Place the goat cheese, lemon zest, 1 tsp olive oil, 1 tsp chopped thyme and the last 2 cloves of garlic (finely chopped) in a small bowl. Add some freshly ground pepper – 2 turns of the pepper mill should do it. Mix well to combine.
- 1 hour before baking, place a baking stone in the oven and heat at 500F.
Assemble and Bake the Pizza
Roll out the pizza dough and spread with the caramelized onions. Add the anchovy fillets and cover with the lemon slices. Now add the mozzarella, interspersed with dollops of the goat cheese mix. Place on the baking stone and bake until the crust is golden brown (12-15 minutes).
Remove and cool for a few minutes. While cooling, top with arugula. You can dress up the arugula with a light dressing. Keep it simple – some good olive oil, salt and pepper will suffice. Add a few more lemon slices on top for looks (these you wouldn’t eat).
Note: the photo’s are of two different pizzas, but same recipe.