Friday, November 23, 2012

Mashed Potato Pizza with Roasted Garlic and Bacon

If you have any leftover mashed potatoes from Thanksgiving, I highly recommend making this pizza.  I first had a mashed potato pizza at BAR in New Haven.  A few friends had raved about it, so I had pretty high expectations going in, and it exceeded all of them.  This pizza isn't quite as good as that one, but it's easier than driving down to New Haven.

From what I remember, mashed potatoes that they used at BAR were kind of loose and liquidy vs. thick and creamy.  While I probably wouldn't have liked that consistency in stand-alone mashed potatoes, it worked really well on their thin crusted pizza.  I usually add some bacon, garlic, and broccoli as toppings, and once the pizza arrives, top it with their signature salad, which is dressed with a light vinaigrette, for some acidity.  I used what I had on hand for this pizza, but feel free to experiment with other toppings!

Mashed Potato Pizza
Mashed Potato Pizza with Roasted Garlic and Bacon
makes 2 individual size pizzas

1 head garlic
Olive Oil
Kosher salt, to taste
1 sprig of fresh thyme (optional)
1 cup mashed potatoes
2-3 strips bacon
1 recipe pizza dough, divided into two balls
2 tablespoons scallions, chopped
2 small handfuls of shredded mozzarella

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Peal off most of the papery skin of a head of garlic, but keep the last layer or two to hold the cloves together.  Slice off the top of the head so that the top of the cloves are exposed.  Check the cloves and discard any yucky ones.  Place the head of garlic on some aluminum foil, drizzle generously with olive oil, sprinkle with some kosher salt, and top with the sprig of thyme, if using.  Wrap the aluminum foil around the garlic, and roast for 30 minutes until soft.

Once the garlic has cooled enough to the touch, squeeze out the cloves and set aside.  Reserve the garlic infused olive oil.  Increase the temperature of the oven to 500°F and place a pizza stone on a rack set in the lower third of the oven.

Place the bacon strips on an unheated frying pan.  Over low heat, fry the bacon until browned on the bottom.  Flip the bacon pieces and brown the other side.  Chop up the bacon, and reserve the bacon grease left in the pan.

On a large piece of parchment paper, take one of the balls of pizza dough and stretch it out.  Spread half the roasted garlic, garlicky olive oil, and bacon grease all over the top of the dough.

Spread half the mashed potatoes on top.

Sprinkle with half the fried bacon pieces, scallions, and mozzarella.

Slide the pizza (still on the parchment paper) onto a pizza stone.  Bake for 5 minutes, then rotate the pizza, and bake for another 3-5 minutes, until nicely browned.  Repeat with the shaping, topping, and baking second pizza.

Mashed Potato Pizza
Let both pizzas cool for about 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

Update:  I've made this pizza using Ken Forkish's Same Day Straight Pizza Dough.  That dough is so much better!

Next:  Green Smoothies
Previously:  Ramen Cabbage Salad
Three years ago:  Nanaimo Bars

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