Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Grilled Shrimp and Cilantro Pesto Pizza

It was Monday night, I had a long long day at work and a brilliant idea: why don't I make a grilled pizza from scratch on Monday night when I am already exhausted... In the end everything turned out well but I was too tired to enjoy my creation. I started by putting 2 tablespoons of olive oil instead of 2 teaspoons. I made another batch with the right amount of everything and ended up with 4 pizzas. Turns out the extra olive oil (6 times more than the recipe called for) didn't make much of a difference from the other dough with the right amount. The beauty of this recipe is the pesto. It's perfect with the shrimp and buffalo mozzarella.

Grilled Shrimp and Cilantro Pesto Pizza (Throwdown with Bobby Flay)

(1/4-ounce) package active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
3/4 cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees F)
1 3/4 to 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus additional for kneading and dredging
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons olive oil, plus 1 teaspoon for greasing the bowl
Cilantro Pesto, recipe follows
8 ounces buffalo mozzarella, thinly sliced
Grilled Shrimp, recipe follows
Fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish

Whisk together the yeast and 1/4 cup of the water in a small bowl and let sit for 5 minutes to proof. Place 1 3/4 cups of the flour in a large bowl with the salt. Add the yeast mixture, the remaining water, and oil and stir until combined. Transfer the dough to a floured surface and knead until smooth. Grease a large bowl with the remaining 1 teaspoon of oil, add the dough, and turn to coat. Cover and place in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
Preheat the grill to high. Once the dough has risen, divide it in half. Divide each half into 2 balls. Roll each ball into an 8-inch circle. Brush with oil and grill on both sides until golden brown. Spread a few tablespoons of the Cilantro Pesto over each pizza, top with a few slices of buffalo mozzarella, and then top with 4 shrimp and cilantro leaves. Place the pizza on the grill until the cheese melts. Serve hot.

Cilantro Pesto:
3/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves
2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons pine nuts
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1/2 cup olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Grilled Shrimp:
16 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
Olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the grill to medium-high.

Brush each shrimp with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill for 1 to 2 minutes per side or until just cooked through (shrimp will be opaque and turn pink).


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