Sunday, September 28, 2008

Rosemary, Blue Cheese and Grape Flatbread

Harvest is almost over in California's Wine Country and that means it's time to party. Each winery usually hosts its own Harvest or 'Crush' party each year. This may involve skeet shooting, grape stomping, keg stands or ritzy dinners in front of large fountains with a big band. They all vary.

A great way to salute our friend, the grape, before it heads into fermentation to convert into tasty wine, try this flatbread recipe I ripped out of this month's Food and Wine. This recipe can be a piece of cake if you buy frozen crusts from Trader Joe's. If you can't get your hands on some of the pre-made stuff then roll up your sleeves and get involved!

Rosemary, Blue Cheese and Grape Flatbread

active dry yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
2 cups bread flour, plus more for rolling
3/4 cup warm water
2 teaspoons chopped rosemary
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 pound red grapes (1 1/2 cups)
Coarse sea salt
3 ounces blue cheese, crumbled (1/2 cup)
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon snipped chives
  1. In a large bowl, whisk the yeast and sugar with 1/4 cup of the flour. Stir in 1/4 cup of the warm water and let stand until slightly foamy, about 5 minutes. Add the rosemary, fine salt, pepper and the remaining 1 3/4 cups of flour and 1/2 cup of water; stir until a dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead until smooth, about 5 minutes. Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl, cover and let rise in a draft-free spot until billowy and doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 450°. Place a pizza stone in the bottom of the oven, and preheat for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Press and stretch the dough into a 13-inch round, then transfer to a lightly floured pizza peel. Press the grapes into the dough and sprinkle with sea salt.
  4. Slide the flatbread onto the hot stone and bake for about 12 minutes, until the crust is golden and the grapes have begun to release some of their juices. Sprinkle the blue cheese on top and bake for about 2 minutes longer, until the cheese melts. Slide the flatbread onto a work surface and drizzle with the honey and sprinkle with the chives. Cut into wedges and serve.



Lyd said...

worth the wait

Anonymous said...

The flavors are fantastic! My dough was a little tough although I followed the recipe to a tee - any suggestions?

Elizabeth said...

Dear Reader- Thanks for your question and for reading the blog! I am not well versed in dough and if you followed exactly I am stumped. I know that you should always use bread flour, which has more protein. Also, If you don't have a pizza stone, cook the pizza on a preheated cookie sheet. This will make it brown much better. I am bad with dough because I get too impatient and letting it rise is so key. If this is not helpful let me know and ill poke around and try to find better tips for you. Thanks again!