Ciao'd while watching Monday Night Football. This recipe inspired by
the gold and green Green Bay Packers. I am a G-Men Fan. Sorry Aaron. 

I posted this photo on Instagram and received messages from lots of you asking for the recipe (thank you!). I shot the photo before I baked the pizza which made the requests that much more interesting. Then I thought, "It's the holidays and other people - I'm not the only one! - are pining for a healthy dose of simplicity in the midst of the seasonal excess." Often, the only green we see during this party season is that of Christmas trees and wreaths. With this pesto pizza, we can have our green and eat it, too. 

You've got carte blanche to vary the ingredients in this recipe. Prefer broccoli rabe to broccoli? Go for it. Feel like adding red onion? Do it! A sprinkle of basil, a dash of oregano, a drizzle of olive oil. This pizza has personal expression written all over it. 



Two 8-inch prepared pizza crusts (I used Vicolo cornmeal crust) or one large crust
2 cups broccoli florets, larger florets halved
One 6.5-ounce jar prepared basil pesto
One 8-ounce package frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and patted dry
2 cups shredded whole-milk mozzarella
1 cup fresh ricotta
Red pepper flakes, optional.

Preheat the oven to 425°F.

Place the broccoli florets in a microwaveable dish. Drizzle with a few tablespoons of water, cover, and microwave until just tender (about 3 minutes). Drain and pat dry.

Spread the pesto on the pizza crust, dividing evenly. Sprinkle half of the mozzarella over the pesto. Place the broccoli florets and artichokes on the cheese, dividing evenly. Top with the remaining mozzarella. Dollop the ricotta over the mozzarella. Sprinkle with the red pepper, if using.

Bake until the cheese is melted and the crust is lightly browned, about 12 to 15 minutes. Let sit 5 minutes before slicing. 


Ciao'd while toasting the return of football season. Go Giants. And Broncos. 



I cannot take credit for this recipe in its entirety. My friends at epicurious.com offer a recipe for Truffled Tallegio and Mushroom Pizza on their site. It was created by Paul Grimes for Gourmet magazine (RIP. Sad face) in 2008. I have adapted the recipe a bit but not enough to take credit for as my own. Here are the few changes I made simply based on my preference:

Instead of 3/4 pound of the one cheese (Tallegio or Fontina) in Gourmet's recipe, I call for 1/4 pound of each of three cheeses: Tallegio, Fontina, and fresh Mozzarella. Gourmet's recipe calls for "sliced mushrooms" without indicating variety. The the mushrooms Gourmet photo look to me like the common variety rather than an assortment that includes wild mushrooms. I used a combination of wild mushrooms and cremini mushrooms on my pizza. Finally, Gourmet offers the option of drizzling the finished pizza with truffle oil. While this is a beyond delish finish, I suggested fresh thyme which is more in line with the 4 PM Fix concept of using pantry ingredients. 

Regardless of the pizza you choose to prepare, you can be assured that the recipes are super simple, quick, and #dolcevitadelish. Plus, pizza is always a good vehicle for promoting family time. My 17-year-old son helped me prepare mine. Go figure. 

Epicurious, Gourmet and Paul Grimes get first billing. Here's the link again to the original recipe.

And here's mine (it's in the photo above):

Serves 4

1 pound pizza dough
Olive oil, for brushing dough
½ pound sliced mushrooms, assorted varieties
¼ pound chilled Taleggio cheese, rind discarded and cheese sliced
¼ pound chilled Fontina cheese, rind discarded and cheese sliced
¼ pound fresh mozzarella, sliced and each piece patted dry
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

Put a large heavy baking sheet on the lower rack of the oven, and then preheat it to 500ºF.

Stretch out the dough on a lightly floured surface (do not roll it) into a shape (rectangle or oval or completely organic) approximately 16 by 13 inches. Don’t stress it. Transfer to a parchment-lined tray or baking sheet. Poke the dough all over with a fork. Brush with a bit of olive oil.

Slide the dough along with the parchment onto the hot baking sheet. Bake until the top is puffed and both the top and bottom of the pizza is beginning to turn golden, about 10 minutes.

Remove the pizza from the oven and prick any large bubbles. Top the crust with the mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Arrange the cheese on top.

Bake the pizza until the edge of the cheese has browned and the cheese is bubbling, 8 to 10 minutes.  Scatter the thyme on the pizza. Serve immediately.  Recipe adapted from Gourmet|epicurious.