Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Chicken, Bacon & Caesar Pizza and a Little Help from Newman's Own

I can't begin to tell you all how excited I was when I got a huge package from Newman's Own the other day as part of the Tastemakers Program with FoodBuzz. I was like a kid on Christmas morning tearing open the box, all for salad dressings and tomato sauce, but hey isn't that what it truly means to be a food blogger? Food excites me and new products are like presents. And what was especially exciting about this package? The awesome Flip Video Camera that I got to shoot awesome videos. I will most definitely be using this in the future to record tips and tricks on some more complicated recipes and give you a little insight into my world and kitchen.

Tonight though I had to work solo on this project and I had just gotten back from the gym so I wasn't exactly thrilled with making my on camera debut but of course I took one for the team and jumped right in front of the camera anyway. Turns out this Flip Video Camera is actually a lot of fun to play around with. I played around with editing the video and ended up with a really cute vignette type of video that lasts about 30 seconds. I added some music into the background and considering my amateur status here I think it came out pretty cool.

Back to the pizza though, because after all isn't that really why we're all here? One of my favorite pizzas to make is a chicken, bacon, ranch pizza but when I saw the Caesar dressing in the package I knew I wanted to incorporate that into the pizza so I swapped out the ranch for Caesar dressing. I loved the tangy taste it gave the pizza and it really worked well with the bacon and chicken.

I really wanted to make this pizza extra special for Newman's own so I decided to up the ante a little bit and add in a garlic knot crust. It was the perfect way to utilize some of the Newman's Own sauces and really took the pizza to the next level. Don't be intimidated by this step, it's actually quite easy and only added a few extra minutes onto the prep time and it is so worth it in the end.

Chicken, Bacon & Caesar Pizza
Yield: 1 pie
Prep Time: 15 minutes     I     Bake Time: 15 minutes

  • Pizza dough
  • 6 slices thick cut bacon diced and cooked
  • 1/4 pound chicken diced and cooked
  • 6 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/4 cup Caesar dressing
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • parsley
  • salt & pepper
  • tomato sauce for dipping

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees and prepare a pizza shell, but first cut approximately an 1/8 of the dough off and set aside. To do this grease whatever pan you plan to make your pizza in and place the dough inside. Use your fingertips to flatten and stretch out the dough so it is covering your entire pan. Once you have done this sprinkle a little cheese on top and pop the dough in the oven.

The goal here is to cook the dough slightly so it wont shrink on you later when you add the toppings on. This will also allow you to have a fully cooked dough without overcooking or drying out your toppings. Keep a close on the dough while your are cooking the shell, if it starts to shrink you can take it out and stretch. The shell is done when it no longer looks raw, just very, very under cooked. It should be very light in color, that is exactly what you want.

At this point you want to form garlic knots to make the garlic knot crust using the dough you set aside earlier. Roll out the dough until it is approximately 1/4 of an inch thick and cut into thin strips. Wrap the dough around your fingers two times and push the end through the middle to form a garlic knot. It may take a couple of tries to perfect the technique and you can always unravel it if they are too messy.

Place all the knots around the edge of the pizza and bake until the knots are approximately halfway cooked. While it is cooking in your food processor pulse the garlic and oil until you get a thick creamy mixture. When you remove the pie from the oven brush on the garlic mixture and sprinkle salt, pepper and parsley on top. Next add all of your pizza toppings except for the cheese on top of the pizza making sure you coat everything with the dressing. Add the cheese last and then put the pizza back in the oven for approximately 10 minutes.

Don't forget to check out my video! I edited it using Flip Software to make a sort of fun vignette type video. Enjoy!


The Mom Chef said...

You made all those knots? How knotted were your fingers afterwards? :)

That pizza looks and sounds fantastic. We've turned into home made pizza hounds around here lately so I'll have to add this to the list. Great use of Newman's Own stuff.

Erin said...

That pizza looks incredible! Can't believe you mad those knots, all of them! What a great tastemaker to be a part of, good job with the little video!