Life is all about lessons, and one that I seem to be learning lately is that the more time that passes, the harder it seems to maintain old friendships. People change, I change, life changes…but most importantly, it goes on. Sometimes it’s for the better and sometimes it’s not, but I am realizing how important it is to cherish good friends when you find them.
In my world, appreciation for good friends comes in the form of the knock down, drag out BEST pizza I think I have ever made. Also, I should work on my modesty. But seriously, I could.not.get.enough. of this flavor combination. Cheese? Check. Bacon? Check. Caramelized onion? Yup. More cheese? Certainly. I was blown away by how much I enjoyed this pizza, and I’ve been dreaming about it ever since.
I had two of these aforementioned good friends over for Halloween. We carved pumpkins, drank more glasses of red wine than is appropriate for a work night, and capped it off with Hocus Pocus, because apparently we’re 10 years old again (and FYI, I am referring to the movie, not the wine…my drinking habit didn’t set in until later in life). It was perfect. And before I fell asleep that night, I said a little prayer of thanks for friends who will sit down and eat an entire pizza with me, not once asking where the salad is.
- 1 lb. pizza dough — I use Trader Joe’s whole wheat dough
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large apple, very thinly sliced
- 5 slices thick-cut bacon, cut into squares
- 1 small red onion, sliced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 cup freshly grated gouda cheese
- 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 8-10 sage leaves — these are optional; I forgot to throw some on and obviously enjoyed it just fine without
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Slice onions. Heat a skillet over medium heat and add 1/2 tablespoon olive oil, then add onions with a sprinkle of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until caramelized, soft and juicy. In the last minute, add garlic and cook for 60 seconds, then set aside off heat. While onions are cooking, cut bacon. Place on a paper-towel lined plate, and cover with another paper towel. Microwave for 3-4 minutes, just until the fat is rendered so the pizza is not incredible greasy. Set aside.
Throw pizza dough on a floured surface. Using a rolling pin or your hands, roll and shape it into your desired shape. I usually make it into a rustic rectangle because it’s easier for my artistically-challenged brain, but a circle works too. Brush with remaining olive oil and sprinkle with nutmeg. Slice apples (do not do this earlier unless you don’t mind brown apples), then add about 1/4 cup cheese onto the dough. Place a layer of apples on the cheese, then add the onions and garlic. Add the remaining cheese evenly over top, then finish with bacon and another layer of apples. Add a few pieces of sage if desired.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until cheese is golden brown and bubbly.
Yields: 2-4 servings
Recipe from: How Sweet It Is