Skillet Leek Pizza
Forget about the tomato sauce and mozzarella. My Greek-style pizza has the simple toppings of a foccacia on a yeast-based dough round that’s browned in a skillet to make the bottom extra crisp, and then puffed in the oven. This recipe makes enough dough for six medium pizzas. lf you want to make the dough ahead of time, cover it tightly with plastic wrap and store in your refrigerator. Pull the dough from the fridge twenty minutes before rolling so it has a chance to warm up a little. You can also freeze half of this dough for as long as a month or two (although the longer it’s frozen, the less I like its flavor). Be sure to let the dough thaw completely before you work with it.
Serves4 to 6 as a main course, or 10 to 12 as an appetizer or small plate
Total Timeunder 2 hours
Make Ahead RecipeYes
OccasionBuffet, Casual Dinner Party, Cocktail Party, Family Get-together
Recipe Courseappetizer, main course
Dietary Considerationegg-free, halal, kosher, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free, vegetarian
Taste and Texturecheesy, chewy, crisp, salty
Type of Dishbread, focaccia
- ¼ cup warm water (105°F)
- 1 1/8 teaspoons dry yeast (½ envelope)
- ½ cup room temperature water
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for greasing
- 2 cups all purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
- 1½ teaspoons kosher salt, plus extra garnish
- ½ cup thinly sliced, cleaned leeks
- 6 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup crumbled feta cheese
- Freshly ground black pepper
Put the warm water in a small bowl and sprinkle the yeast on top. Let stand until the yeast softens, 3 to 5 minutes. Mix slightly to dissolve the yeast and let it proof for another 15 minutes in a warm spot in the kitchen. Add the room temperature water and 1 tablespoon of the extra-virgin olive oil to the yeast mixture and stir to combine. Combine the flour and 1 teaspoon of the salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix on very low speed. Slowly add the liquid ingredients to the dry and increase the speed of the mixer slightly to incorporate the mass. Stop the mixer and replace the paddle with a dough hook if you have one. Knead until the dough becomes smooth and begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl, about 4 minutes. Place the dough on a lightly floured board and knead the dough by hand for another minute or two. Dust with flour as needed to prevent sticking. Shape the dough into a ball and place in a very lightly oiled bowl and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Let stand until dough doubles in bulk, about 1 hour.
Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the leeks. Raise the heat to medium-high and sweat the leeks with the remaining ½ teaspoon salt until soft and translucent, about 3 to 4 minutes. Reduce the heat if the leeks begin to brown. Set aside and let cool.
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
When the dough has doubled in bulk, divide it into 6 equal pieces (about 6 ounces each). Set the pieces of dough being used on a baking sheet and cover with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap. (Dough not being used can be placed in the refrigerator or frozen until ready to use.) With a rolling pin on a lightly floured surface, roll each piece of dough as evenly as possible into a 6-inch circle, dusting lightly with flour as needed.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large skillet. Place one dough round in the hot skillet and allow it to brown and puff for 1 to 2 minutes. With tongs or a metal spatula, flip the pizza over and brown briefly on the other side. Once browned, remove the pizza from the pan and place on an ovenproof platter. Sprinkle the top with 2½ tablespoons of the feta, a generous tablespoon of the sautéed leeks, a quick grind of pepper, and a pinch of salt. Repeat for each pizza. Place all the pizzas in the oven and bake just long enough for the cheese to melt.
Pull from the oven, cut each into 6 pieces, and serve immediately.
2004 Catherine Cora