Broccoli Pizza with White Garlic Sauce

Today in 12 Days of Oscar we move to films that are nominated for an Oscar this year.  We’ll start with the animated film Inside Out.   This film takes a look at the workings of the mind of Riley Anderson.  When she is born, she is born with basic emotions Joy and Sadness.  As she grows up, Fear, Disgust, and Anger come into being.  Riley’s memories are shown as small orbs that are fed into Long Term Memory every night while Riley sleeps.  When Riley and her parents move from their home in Minnesota to San Francisco, Joy tries her hardest to keep Riley happy and to keep Sadness away from Riley’s emotional “control panel.”   Joy and Sadness scuffle over a memory Sadness has touched while Riley introduces herself to her new classmates and are accidentally sucked into a memory retrieval tube and sent to her Long Term Memory.  I really really really want people to see this movie if they haven’t already, so I won’t tell you any more here.  Inside Out is nominated for two Oscars: Best Animated Feature, and Best Original Screenplay.


When the family moves from Minnesota to San Francisco, Riley’s father is called to a meeting as soon as he gets there.  To keep sadness from taking over, Joy causes Riley to suggest she and her mother go to a pizza place she saw earlier.  At the restaurant, Riley is handed two slices of broccoli pizza.  The emotions yell out “what the heck is that?! Who puts broccoli on a pizza?!” and Anger exclaims “congratulations, San Francisco, you’ve ruined pizza!”

Luckily over here, everyone likes broccoli and they all loved this pizza.  I made it with a white sauce instead of red, just to do something different.  You can use your favorite sauce.  The dough is what’s really key here.  I’ve made a lot of pizza dough but I am certain now that this one is my favorite.  The dough recipe makes enough for 3 12-inch pizzas but it freezes really well if you aren’t throwing a pizza party.  You will need to plan ahead if you’re going to make this dough, because the dough needs to be refrigerated for at least a day and then taken out two hours before baking.

broccoli pizza

Broccoli Pizza with White Garlic Sauce


for the crust (makes 3 12-inch pizza crusts):

  • 22.5 oz. (about 4 1/2 C) bread flour, plus more for dusting
  • .5 oz. (about 1 1/2 Tbsp.) sugar
  • .35 oz. (about 1 Tbsp.) kosher salt
  • .35 oz. (about 2 tsp.) instant yeast
  • 1.125 oz. (about 3 Tbsp.) extra virgin olive oil
  • 15 oz. lukewarm water

for the sauce:

  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 C. heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp. minced fresh thyme or marjoram
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

for topping the pizza:

  • 2-3 C. fresh broccoli florets (use more or less depending on your preference)
  • 1/3-1/2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese


To make the crust, combine the flour, sugar, salt, and yeast in the bowl of a food processor and pulse 3-4 times until incorporated.

Add olive oil and water to the flour mixture and pulse 3 to 4 times until incorporated.

Run the food processor until the mixture forms a ball that rides around the bowl above the blade, for about 15 seconds and continue processing 15 seconds after that.

Move the dough ball to a lightly floured surface and knead once or twice by hand to form a smooth ball.

Divide the dough into 3 even parts and place each part in a separate covered quart-size deli container or in a zipper-lock freezer bag.

Place into the refrigerator and allow to rise for at least 1 day and as many as 5 days.

When ready to use, remove the dough from refrigerator and shape into balls before allowing to rest at room temperature for at least 2 hours before baking.

To make the sauce, heat the olive oil in a heavy saucepan over medium heat.

Add the onion and saute until translucent, 5-6 minutes.

Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute longer.

Add the cream and reduce the heat to medium-low, then cook for about 3 minutes until the cream thickens and reduces slightly.

Remove the sauce from the heat, stir in the thyme, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Let cool completely before putting the sauce on the pizza crust.

To assemble and bake the pizza, heat a pizza stone in the oven at 450 degrees and let the oven continue to heat for 30 minutes once preheated.

Roll and stretch out the pizza crust on a lightly floured surface to form a roughly 12 inch circle.

Sprinkle a handful of cornmeal on a pizza peel or the back of a baking sheet.

Transfer the 12 inch crust to the “cornmealed” surface, reshape if needed, and shake to make sure the crust isn’t sticking.

Spoon the sauce onto the pizza crust and spread it out to within 1 inch of the edge.

Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the sauce.

Sprinkle the broccoli evenly over the cheese.

Carefully slide the pizza off of the pizza peel or baking sheet onto the pizza stone in the oven.

Bake for 15-20 minutes until cheese bubbles and pizza is cooked through.

Makes 8 servings.

Source:  pizza crust and sauce from Serious Eats



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