Homemade pizza is a Friday night staple at our house, and over the last 6 months we set to work perfecting our favorite pizzas, including this Potato Pizza with Caramelized Onions, Gruyere and Thyme. Through the roller coaster ride of pizza making—oven fires, smoke detectors blaring, tears—I’ve learned a few things:
1. Keep it simple! Not too many toppings, not too much sauce. You don’t have to make everything from scratch (viz. sauce, dough).
2. Use a pizza pan. Not a pizza stone, but the round aluminum pan with little holes in the bottom. This makes the bottom crispy without having to slide it directly onto the oven rack. I’m very happy with this one.
3. Trader Joe’s makes awesome pizza dough. I’ve made my own pizza dough many times, but let’s face it—that takes time and pizza is supposed to be a quick meal. Enter TJ’s pizza dough: inexpensive ($1.29) and chewy & crusty when baked. I like to buy two and put one in the freezer for next time.
4. Slice the potatoes thickly for potato pizza. When I first started making potato pizza, I would use a vegetable peeler to shave paper-thin slices of potato. After cutting my finger on the vegetable peeler, I realized that using a knife to cut the potatoes is safer, quicker and results in better potato pizza. ? -inch thick slices are very reasonable to cut with a chef’s knife and add plenty of potato deliciousness to the pizza.
There you have it—a few tips to get you started on making your own pizzas at home. Tomorrow is Friday, why not give this Potato Pizza a try?
½ medium onion
2-3 medium sized Yukon Gold potatoes
1 pizza dough portion (16 oz.), at room temperature
? cup grated Gruyere cheese (or other strong Swiss cheese)
Freshly ground black pepper
Chevre goat cheese
Make the Pizza
Preheat oven to its highest setting (mine goes to 500°F).
Slice the onion into rings or half-circles. Heat a heavy-bottomed saucepan on low heat and pour in a few teaspoons of olive oil. Sautee onions until soft and beginning to turn golden, 10-15 minutes. Try not to blacken the onions because they will continue cooking in the oven. Remove pan from heat.
Meanwhile, wash and slice the potatoes into ? -inch thick slices. With floured hands, stretch the pizza dough into a circle, tugging and stretching where dough is thicker. Place the dough on a pizza pan or cookie sheet. Arrange the potato slices on top of the pizza dough. Top with caramelized onions, shredded Gruyere and black pepper.
Bake pizza in lower half of oven for about 15 minutes, until potatoes are cooked through and crust is crisp. If you are baking the pizza on a cookie sheet, you can remove the sheet during the last 5 minutes and cook directly on the rack to obtain a browned bottom crust. You may have to play around to figure out the best spot in your oven and times for baking pizza to your taste.
Garnish cooked pizza with plenty of fresh thyme and dollops of chevre. Slice and enjoy!