Alex and my first “real” pizza together was in Rome in 2007. We were on our honeymoon and went to the best pizza place in town, according to our guidebook. The crust was thin and crispy, the sauce delightfully tangy, there was an egg on top. An egg on pizza? We were wary, but it was fabulous. In fact, here’s a photo of that very moment.
This experience started a deep interest (slash obsession) with artisan, Italian-style pizza. We were barely into food at the time, but flew home scheming about the pizza place we wanted to open. But first, we had to figure out how to make it ourselves. The perfect pizza takes years to perfect (if we would have known this at the time, I’m not sure we would have started). But after lots of trial and error, we figured out how to make pizza crust, in the stand mixer and the food processor. Alex shot a video to show the dough consistency. And somewhere along the way, we started a food blog.
Today marks 4 years since we started this blog, and just how it has shaped our lives is difficult to put into words. We’ve met friends all over the country and world who are passionate about food, health, and sustainability. We’ve found a creative outlet that is intensely necessary for us. We’ve learned an extraordinary amount about food and cooking, and upgraded our camera as we grew in our food photography. We’ve partnered with companies and organizations passionate about good food. We taught a cooking class. We wrote a benefit cookbook for a cooking school in Cambodia and fund-raised for a food pantry here in Indy. A whole new world was opened up to us of things we never dreamed we’d be doing, but that now we can’t imagine living without.
Thank you thank you THANK YOU to everyone who has come alongside us over the past 4 years.
To every reader, stranger, and friend who has taught us or listened or encouraged or provided insight or feedback or creative ideas – thank you. This experience has been such a gift, and we’re deeply grateful for all the support from family, friends, Indy (we love you!), foodies, fellow bloggers (we are deeply indebted for inspiration and encouragement!), and readers (you are the best!). We have so many places we want to grow in the next year with A Couple Cooks; we’re not sure exactly where this journey is taking us, but thanks for being along for the ride!
Back to PIZZA. This recipe is based on a pizza we had this visit to Rome. Instead of tomato sauce, it is brushed with olive oil and covered in cheese. The pizza we had was topped with baby asparagus; since that’s not in season here, we substituted scallion greens. The Pecorino Romano cheese here is key: try to find it at your nearest grocery since the taste is not quite like anything else! (We found ours at Trader Joe’s.) And the egg — just like our first Roman pizza, it’s irresistible, and makes for a creamy, gooey mess of a pizza.
Some NEW and IMPROVED pizza tips:
- If you’re really committed, get Tipo 00 flour. It is authentic Italian and we find that it makes the crust texture even smoother.
- We’ve started making our dough a few days before we want to eat it and aging it in the refrigerator for a 2-3 days to help the flavor mellow and balance out.
- We LOVE this pizza peel with sliding canvas. One of the few kitchen tools that lives up to it’s claims!
- ¾ cup mozzarella cheese
- ½ cup Pecorino Romano cheese
- 4 scallions (green onions)
- 2 eggs
- 1 pizza dough
- Olive oil
- Kosher salt
- Prepare the dough using either the stand mixer or food processor methods (you also can knead by hand; follow the video instructions for more). Follow the preparation instructions in the dough recipe if you’ve made it in advance. Place your pizza stone in the oven and preheat to 475°F.
- Prepare the toppings: Slice off the green parts of the scallions so they form long ribbons. In a small skillet, heat ½ tablespoon olive oil. Add the scallions, and saute until slightly tender, stirring, for 1 minute. Remove from the heat.
- When the oven is ready, stretch the dough into a circle (see this video for instructions). Place it on a floured pizza peel or pull the pizza stone out of the oven and carefully place the dough on it.
- Quickly assemble the pizza: Brush olive oil over the dough, and sprinkle with kosher salt. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese, then Pecorino cheese. Top with scallions. Carefully crack two eggs on top and sprinkle with a bit of kosher salt.
- Bake the pizza: Transfer the pizza to the oven on the pizza peel, and bake until the egg white is set and the yolk is still runny, about 7 minutes.