Florentine Pizza

2
15 minutes
30 minutes
Recipe developed for BC Egg by Diversivore

A uniquely delicious white pizza, topped with garlicky olive oil, spinach, prosciutto, and a freshly cracked egg.

Ingredients

Pizza Dough

This makes more than is needed for this recipe. Extra dough can be wrapped in plastic wrap and frozen for future use.

  • 4.5 cups (675 g) all purpose flour (see note for types/variations)
  • 1 tsp instant yeast
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cups (500 ml) lukewarm water
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Pizza Toppings

  • 3-4 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 large eggs (1 per medium-sized pizza – see note)
  • 7 oz (200 g) spinach
  • 5 oz (150 g) fresh mozzarella (see note)
  • 4-5 slices prosciutto (or capicollo)

Instructions

Pizza Dough

  1. Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add the olive oil, egg, and water slowly, and knead until smooth. A stand mixer equipped with a dough hook makes this easiest, but it can be done by hand too. Note that the dough is fairly wet, and you may need to add some oil to your hands to prevent sticking if hand-kneading.
  3. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover, and allow to rest in fridge for four hours or up to overnight.
  4. When you’re ready to make the pizzas, remove the dough from the fridge and split it into six evenly sized pieces.

Pizza

  1. Preheat oven to 450°F (230°C), with a rack placed in the centre.
  2. In a small bowl, combine olive oil, garlic, and nutmeg. Set aside (this can be done well ahead of time if you like).
  3. Boil some water. Place the spinach in a strainer and pour the boiling water over it, then rinse with cold water. Squeeze the spinach to get rid of as much water as you can.
  4. Roll or hand-stretch the pizza dough into a thin base (Uuse a silicone baking sheet underneath for easier transfers in and out of the oven).
  5. Drizzle or brush a generous portion of the garlicky olive oil over the top of the dough.
  6. Add blanched spinach and torn pieces of fresh mozzarella. Transfer to hot oven and bake for ~7 minutes. If you’re making additional pizzas, now is a good time to shape another crust.
  7. Remove the pizza from the oven. Crack an egg into the centre of the pizza and add some torn prosciutto all around. Return to the oven and bake for an additional 5 minutes.
  8. Remove the pizza from the oven and allow it to cool slightly. Slice and serve immediately.
  9. Repeat with remaining dough and toppings.

Notes

Flour Types – This recipe works well using about 1/4 whole wheat and 3/4 all-purpose white flour. Canadian AP flour is generally high in protein, but you may want to use a bread flour, or 00 flour if you’re worried that your AP flour is soft (i.e. low in protein).

Eggs – one large egg in the centre of the pizza works well, but if you want more egg, try two medium eggs cracked off-centre. Note that the five-minute bake time after the egg is added yields a medium-set yolk. For a runnier yolk, reduce the time, and/or bake until the white of the egg has just set.

Fresh Mozzarella – also called mozzarella fior di latte, this cheese is sold as a ball packaged in brine. I quite like the fresh, milky flavour of this cheese, as well as the way it browns and caramelizes in a hot oven. But it is worth noting that it has a much higher moisture content that dry packaged ‘pizza’ mozzarella. Using too much fresh mozzarella (or using overly large pieces) can leave you with a soggy pizza. You can substitute torn bocconcini, or shredded dry (block) mozzarella if you prefer.

Baking – A pizza stone in the oven helps retain heat and brown the pizza’s crust. Place the stone in the oven before pre-heating, to let the stone heat with the oven.  Place the pizza directly on the stone for best results. If you don’t have a pizza stone, you can place the pizza directly onto a hot baking tray in a pre-heated oven. Rolling the crust out on a silicone baking sheet makes this much easier.

Baking times and ovens tend to vary. A very hot oven is essential. Use the baking times given as a starting point, but make any necessary adjustments for your own setup.

Sauce & Variations – The sauce on this pizza is intentionally very simple – but you can definitely experiment with variations. A red sauce (e.g. marinara) would be good, as would a béchamel-based white sauce. In either case, I would go easy on the sauce, and consider adding garlic, as I believe it works very well with the spinach.

For a hearty variation, try adding some very thinly sliced yellow potatoes (e.g. Yukon gold) before applying the garlicky olive oil.

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