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It took a bit of arm twisting, but Robert Barnum, the Cantankerous Chef, sent over recipes for Possum Pizza and pictures. Enjoy!

Possum Pizza Dough

7 cups plus 2 tbsp. King Arthur flour
2 cups plus 2 tbsp. tepid water
1/3 cup olive oil
1 pkt. yeast
1 tsp. salt

Put 2 tbsp. flour, 1 tsp. sugar and 2 tbsp. tepid water in mixing bowl and let sit at room temperature for several hours or over night. Put bowl in mixing stand (Kitchen Aid) with dough hook and mix slowly as you add the flour, oil, salt and water. Mix and knead till smooth, 2-3 minutes. Put out on a smooth surface with some flour dusted over the kneading surface. Knead for several minutes and return to the now oiled mixing bowl and cover with dry towel for 1-3 hours. Then place the dough on a smooth flour dusted surface and knead for several minutes and form a ball. Cut the ball into 8 pieces of similar size and roll into balls and place on a tray to double in size again. Each ball can then be made into a 6-8″ thick or 12″thin crust pizza. For outdoor baking on gas or real wood fired smoker/oven, the thick crust works easier for handling. It takes about 4-6 minutes to cook. (I leave the 8 balls of dough on the tray and after they rise place the whole tray into the smoker and bake for about 30 minutes for king sized hamburger buns with a smoky flavor.

Possum pizza cooking on a wood fired grill. Those are smoked eggs off to the side. Photo by Robert Barnum.

Possum Pizza Sauce and Toppings

Herb Onion Butter Sauce
1-2 sticks butter
1-3 onions peeled and sliced either way
2 tbsp. minced garlic
2 tbsp. thyme

Saute all till onions either soft or caramelized, your preference.

Tomato Sauce
2-3 cups of homemade tomato sauce
1 small can tomato paste
2 small cans tomato sauce
1/2 cup cooking wine or beer
— seasonings if no homemade tomato sauce (canned tomatos with basil, garlic, onions, celery, green pepper, salt, black pepper, oregano, hot sauce and soy sauce).
— simmer browned Italian sausage in the sauce to cut and use for toppings while preparing other ingredients for the pizza. It adds flavor to the sauce and the cut medallions of sausage for topping the pizza. Heat and reduce till desired consistancy.

Toppings:
smoked eggs sliced thin
thin sliced green and or red pepper
thin sliced onion
thin sliced mushrooms
thin sliced black olives
thin sliced pepperoni
thawed green peas and corn
thin sliced heart of palm
small chunks of ham
sliced italian sausage
shreded cheeses (can use 1 to many different types, what ever is left over in the fridge)
1 small tin of flat or rolled anchovies

Flatten the dough sort of thick if using outdoors grill for easier handling. Then put herb butter and tomato sauces on 1/2 of each pizza for variation. Each pizza feeds one to overfull. The herb butter side gets the corn, peas, onions, egg, ham, olives, heart of palm and shredded cheese. The tomato side gets cheese, italian sausage, pepperoni, mushroom, green pepper, onions and anchovies.

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Possum Pizza

No, it doesn’t have opossum in it…¬† but it’s Possum Trot Robert Barnum’s own ‘creation’.

Robert has been bitten with the smoking bug, big-time. Since he put some eggs next to whatever else he was smoking on his specially-modified barbie, he’ll smoke just about anything! …and no, he tries not to inhale ūüėČ

So, last Thursday, he invited Marian (who,¬†unfortunately, got called in last-minute to work), ¬†plus the whole crew from Bee Heaven Farm to enjoy his Possum Pizza. Hani & his wife also joined us. This was a ‘make your own pizza’ affair, for which he provided balls of dough, a couple of sauces (homemade, of course), shredded cheese and an assortment of toppings. This time, he had both a whole wheat and a white flour dough, and the toppings included pepperoni, sausage (sliced), a seasoned ground meat of some sort (no, not ‘possum, I told ya already!), bacon, ham, sliced smoked eggs, corn, green pepper strips, peas, hearts of palm (from the famous drive-by harvest – see BHF’s blog about that adventure), King mushrooms, and probably something else I’m forgetting…

We all trooped over there after winding down a long day of weeding and transplanting tomatoes on the farm, bringing freshly-brewed tea and ice, to join some of Robert’s homemade Antidesma (bignay) wine. We met his other guests, a couple of who drove down all the way from Ft. Lauderdale to partake of the goodies. I’d say it was well worth the drive!

Since only one of our group had any real pizza making experience, our pizzas were anything but round. To help¬†slide them on/off the smoker, Robert¬†fabricated pizza peels out of some¬†scavenged hardwood and thin pieces of scrap aluminum – with¬†a generous dusting of corn meal, those pizzas rolled right off. With a not-so-generous dusting, they¬†kind of ¬†stuck on their way to the smoking shelf, and they got even more warped. Oh, well – master pizza makers we’re¬†NOT, but they still ate well.

After partaking (and sharing) our creations, Robert surprised us with some of his exotic fruit ice creams – this time it was Monstera (aka Ceriman) ice cream, and a Passion-Allspice ice. And to finish it off, a small glass of a thick, after-dinner lychee wine that left us all mmmmmming.

Early-birds that we are, we were finished by 8:30pm, and meandered on home to bed. I think we encountered a grand total of 3 cars on the way home. Only in Redland!

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