Let's be real, Friday nights at home are amazing. Especially when there is pizza, and especially when it’s homemade. Which is why Pizza Friday is a brilliant, beautiful thing. If you are yet to partake in this grand tradition, please take a look at my top five reasons for why Pizza Friday is the best day of the week:
- You get to spend all week dreaming up wild and glorious pizza topping combinations. And in return, you quickly become an expert at pairing the right cheese with the right meats, fruits and veggies. For example: strawberries + ricotta = too watery, strawberries + goat cheese = too dry, strawberries + feta = sweet and salty perfection.
- You get to enjoy a gourmet style personal pizza while wearing sweatpants (or no pants).
- Pizza and Netflix just make sense.
- Pizza and wine make even better sense.
- Did you ever go to one of those pizza restaurants as a kid where they’d give you pizza dough to play with at the table? (No? Okay, I’m just now realizing how weird that is). Well, my sister and I would always try to eat the ball of dough and we’d always get yelled at by our parents. On Pizza Friday, you can eat as much raw pizza dough as your weird heart desires. Not that I do this anymore…
If those aren’t enough reasons to convince you to join the Pizza Friday Fan Club, then perhaps this recipe for Strawberry Arugula Pizza will! Layered with fresh, ruby red berries drizzled with a little olive, this pretty pie gets topped with pine nuts, crumbled feta, chopped basil and lemony arugula. It’s sweet, salty, zesty and magnificent and it’s my favorite combination for spring.
I hope you’ll join me in making this Strawberry Arugula pizza in the coming weeks, or better yet, let me know what wild and crazy toppings you come up with yourself!
Strawberry Arugula Pizza
for the pizza dough:
If you’d like to make your own pizza dough, I highly recommend Jim Lahey’s No Knead Pizza Dough recipe. It’s delicious, foolproof and quick to whip up. Although, please note, the dough will need to rise for a full 18-24 hours. So set your timers for Thursday night! Here’s what you’ll need:
- 3 3/4 cups (500 grams) all-purpose flour, plus more for shaping dough
- 1 1/2 cups (350 grams) water
- 1/4 tsp.(1 gram) active dry yeast
- 2 tsp. (16 grams) fine sea salt
for the toppings:
*These measurements are just for starters, top with as little or as much as you like!
- Fresh strawberries, thinly sliced (about 1.5 cups)
- Feta Cheese (about 1/2 - 1 cup)
- Pine Nuts (about 1/4 cup)
- Arugula (about 1-2 cups)
- Fresh Basil leaves, julienned(about 1/2 - 1 cup)
- Lemon, zested and quartered
- Olive Oil
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- Optional garnish: Balsamic Glaze
1.) Make a batch of Jim Lahey’s pizza dough and let rise 18-24 hours. Once the dough has risen, you can refrigerate for up to 3 days if needed. Note: His recipe says it yields 4 pizzas, but I only ever seem to have enough dough for two 10” pizzas. Also Note: If you don't have time for that noise, you can buy pre-made pizza dough at places like Whole Foods, Trader Joes or Publix - but it's definitely not as good :)
2.) Preheat the oven to 500 degrees, or as hot as your oven will go.
3.) Divide the dough in half, and cover the other half with a clean kitchen towel to keep from drying out. Working with a floured surface and floured hands, flatten the ball of dough out into a 10” circle. Once your dough is flattened out, transfer to an oiled baking sheet. You can also line a baking sheet with parchment paper or cook directly on a pizza stone.
4.) To assemble, top with a layer of thinly sliced strawberries. Drizzle and brush the berries with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Then, top with crumbled feta and pine nuts and place in the oven. Bake about 10 minutes or until the crust is golden brown (oven temps and times may vary, so keep an eye on it).
5.) While the pizza bakes, toss the arugula with a bit of olive oil, salt, pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice and set aside.
6.) Once the pizza has baked to your liking, remove from oven and top with the lemon zest, chopped basil leaves, arugula mixture and an additional squeeze of lemon juice. Drizzle with balsamic glaze, slice and enjoy!