Potatoes on Pizza: Straight-up Unusual, or Unusually Tasty?

As regular readers will know, while I’m often tempted to share the same things with you guys week after week — starch-based anything, mostly — my better judgment (and my mom) makes me switch things up. So you can imagine when, a few weeks back, I made two tasty Italian-inspired pizzas to share with you guys, it was a struggle to hold off sending them both your way in one go. So I waited a week, then two, and that’s all I could handle. I’m caving; this pizza is too tasty to keep under wraps any longer. My apologies in advance for the lack of diversity, and the heavy dose of carbs. Friends, meet potato pizza.

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I know it sounds unappealing, throwing starch on starch and topping it all off with a mild cheese. It seems so boring, so bland, so beige. But trust the Italians to know that simple ingredients, when treated well, can seriously deliver. 

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As always, the base is key — a simple no-knead crust is elevated to ultra-tasty levels by brushing the edges with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkling with your best sea salt. Next, add on a big handful of cubed potatoes, steamed in well-salted water until their texture is exceptionally tender, almost falling apart. Add to that a good sprinkling of fresh thyme and black pepper and top with a few handfuls of grated mozzarella. 

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Unexceptional as the results may look, each bite is all texture and flavour: crisp and chewy crust, creamy potatoes, gooey cheese, with the thyme and pepper keeping the otherwise rich flavours fresh. Word on the street is that it’s even tastier the next day, cold. Which, maybe, isn’t the most Italian thing in the world, but I’m sure they could be convinced.
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Potato Pizza
Makes 1 large pizza (enough for two hungry people)

Ingredients
1/2 batch of no-knead pizza dough, prepared to the point where it’s ready to be shaped and baked*
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
1.5 cups of potatoes, peeled, cut into 2cm cubes and boiled in well-salted water until super-tender (5-10 minutes)
1.5 tsp fresh thyme
1/2 tsp fresh black pepper
1.5-2 cups grated mozzarella cheese

Directions

1. Measure a piece of parchment paper to fit a 9x13 inch baking pan. Place baking pan, without parchment, in your oven and preheat the oven to 445ºF.

2. On the parchment paper, shape your prepared dough into a rectangle that nearly fills the parchment.

3. Brush the eges of the dough with the 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, making a border that measures ~1 inch thick, and sprinkle the oiled area fairly generously with salt (~1/2 tsp).

4. Distribute the potatoes evenly inside the bordered area. Sprinkle evenly with thyme, pepper and cheese.

5. Carefully remove the hot baking sheet from the oven and transfer the pizza, on the parchment paper, onto the baking sheet. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese melts and the crust is just beginning to brown. Remove from the oven, cut and serve!

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