Happy Saint Patty’s Day! I sincerely apologize for not having an appropriately-themed dish to share with you this year. I’m experimenting with no fewer than three recipes at the moment and this wonderful holiday caught me by surprise. I’m an embarrassment to food bloggers everywhere, I’m sure. Still, I do have a tried and true recipe for Irish Cream Pound Cake on file for you that I highly recommend. For Irish cream lovers, this cake is sin on a plate. If you aren’t as fond of liquor as I am, you can also whip up a batch of bright green Mint Chocolate Candy Cookies. Yum yum. Finally, considering how strongly potatoes are tied to Irish history, you might even consider today’s post to be acceptable. Right? Of course. It’s what I intended all along…mmhm…
Growing up, I seemed to have weird tastes even for a kid. Maybe even especially for a kid. See, instead of slathering ketchup or ranch dressing on anything and everything I really liked bland things. Boring things. My favorite snacks included white bread with butter and peas eaten out of the can (eww!). Don’t get me wrong, I definitely had a sweet tooth (and was a chubber until I discovered roller blading at 15), but I would always choose the cheese and crackers over pizza bites. Over the years I have of course grown to love more complex and unusual tastes…until it comes to pizza. For some reason, I am still a pizza minimalist. Give me a little EVOO, parm, and herbs and I’m good. No sauce required, no deep-dish, no stuffed-crust. There are some killer veggie-lover’s pies out there and I had a kickass gluten-free ground turkey pizza and my best bud’s house, but if I make a pizza for myself I won’t need much.
This recipe is a continuation of my love affair with sage. I also learned that I really like the potato-pizza combo in Japan where they like to put potato salad (among other things) on their pies. While the pizza recipe itself was simple enough, being the klutz that I am I happened to smash my hand into a metal door frame at work the day I made this and had a constantly oozing cut the rest of the day. Not wanting to risk kneading the dough, I cheated and bought a pre-made organic blob at my local Coop but included the original dough recipe here for you. Since simply topping the pizza was a little boring even for me, I included a batch of “green fries”. Pizza and fries for dinner, only tastier and healthier!
Potato Sage Pizza with Green Fries
For the Pizza Dough*…
2 t active dry yeast
1 1/3 C warm water
3 ½ – 4 C flour
2 T EVOO
1 T salt
* Note: According to source recipe, this makes two 12″ pizzas. Save half the dough for later.
For the Pizza Toppings…
¼ C EVOO
6 oz. red potatoes, boiled and sliced thinly
2 T coarsely chopped fresh sage (or 2 t dried sage)
salt and pepper to taste
For Green Fries…
1 lb. fresh green beans
1 C canola or other neutral oil, or enough to fill a medium sauce pan ~2″ deep
1 t salt
1 t wasabi powder
- For the dough (which can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge overnight): sprinkle yeast over the top of warm water and let sit for about 5 minutes or until mostly dissolved. Then, add oil, salt, and flour and knead or mix with an electric mixer with dough attachment on low speed for about 1 minute until the ingredients are incorporated. Continue kneading or mix on medium for another 10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic.
- Cut dough in half and save one ball in the refrigerator for future use (will keep for 3 days). Place the other ball in a floured bowl covered in plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in height – about 1 hour depending on temperature (in my 65°F living room it takes about 3 hrs for my dough to rise). Once risen, punch dough down and reroll into a ball, letting it rest covered in a cloth for another 15 minutes or so to proof. Move a rack to the bottom of the oven and preheat to 475°F.
- After dough has proofed roll it out onto a floured work surface and shape into a 12″ flat disk. Place dough on a pizza stone or greased baking sheet. Use your fingertips to push dents in the surface of the dough to prevent bubbles (I forgot this step and got some monster bubbles!) and brush liberally with EVOO, ~ ¼ Cup.
- Top pizza with potato slices and sage. Dribble an additional 2 Tablespoons EVOO on top of the potatoes/sage and add salt and pepper to taste. Bake pizza on bottom rack until the crust is golden brown – about 12 minutes.
- While pizza is baking fill a heavy-bottomed saucepan 2″ deep with canola or neutral oil for frying. Heat oil to 350°F – be careful to keep it from smoking – and drop beans very carefully into the oil in handfuls, cooking for 30 seconds at a time or until beans are bright green and just soft. Remove from oil and place on paper towel-lined plate and repeat until all beans are cooked. Pat beans with paper towel to remove excess oil.
- In a separate bowl, combine salt and wasabi powder. Sprinkle seasoning over beans, toss evenly to coat, and serve alongside pizza or as an appetizer if pizza is still cooking. If left to sit, the “green fries” become mushy.
I devoured this pizza. It is almost embarrassing to admit just how much of it I ate in a single sitting, especially since – even without sauce or meat – it is pretty filling with all the potatoes. I just loved the light taste and crispy sage spirals. I do wish the sage flavor had been a bit stronger so I’m thinking I may brush the dough with sage butter instead of EVOO the next time I make this. Not as healthy, granted, but even more delicious!
As for the “green fries”, they were better than I expected. I’ll admit, not dipping the fries in some breading before frying had me a little skeptical, but they turned out really flavorful and with a great kick thanks to the wasabi – the perfect compliment to a mild pizza. Unlike true fries though they were quite soft and, as tasty as they were, I really missed the crunch. I’m thinking I will pan fry them in the future to try to give them a bit more texture. Has anyone pan fried green beans before? Am I crazy? Haha, probably. 😛
Overall Preference: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥