Pizza Margherita Bianca
This beautiful five-cheese pizza is scented with olive oil and herbs. You may put other toppings on the dough and make different versions, but this “white” pizza of cheeses and herbs is a wonderful change from “red” pizzas with meat.
- Pizza Dough
- Warm Water - 1-1/4 cups
- Active Dry Yeast - 1 package
- Sugar - 1 tablespoon
- Sugar - 1 tablespoon
- Salt - 1 tablespoon
- Extra-Virgin Olive Oil - 1/4 cup
- All-purpose Unbleached Flour - 3 cups
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- White Onion - 1 large, sliced thin
- Fresh Ricotta - 6 ounces
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Fresh Oregano - 1 tablespoon, chopped
- Dry Ricotta - 3 ounces, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- Asiago Cheese - 4-1/2 ounces, grated
- Parmesan Cheeses - 4-1/2 ounces
- Fresh Mozzarella Cheese - 6 ounces, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- Garlic Cloves - 3, minced
- Cornmeal for dusting
- Truffle oil - 3 tablespoons (optional)
- Fresh Rosemary - 3 sprigs, stemmed and chopped
To make the dough: Put 1/4 cup of the water in a bowl and dissolve the yeast and sugar in the water. Let the mixture sit at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes, until it begins to bubble and foam. Add the remaining water, salt, and olive oil and mix well. Using a big wooden spoon, stir in the flour one cup at a time. When the dough is too stiff to stir, put it on a clean floured board or work surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 7 minutes. The dough should be a little moist. Gather the dough into a ball.
Oil a large bowl and put the dough into the bowl. Turn it to get oil on all sides, cover the top of the bowl with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm room until doubled in bulk, about 2 hours (when ready, a fingerprint will remain in the dough when it is pressed). Punch the dough down with your fists, cover again, and let rise again until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes. Cut the dough into three even pieces and roll each into a ball. Put the dough balls on a floured sheet pan, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until ready to use; the dough can be stored this way up to 8 hours.
To assemble: Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a small skillet and add the sliced onion. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are golden, caramelized, and sweet, 30 - 40 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and let cool.
Preheat the oven to its highest setting. On a floured board or work surface, roll the pizza dough balls out into three circles, 1/4-inch thick. Sprinkle sheet pans with corn meal and put the circles on the pans (a pizza stone may be used instead). Dimple the dough with your fingertips and rub with olive oil. Spread fresh ricotta over the dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with oregano. Spread the onions evenly over the ricotta. Distribute the remaining cheeses evenly over the pizzas. Add the garlic to 1/4 cup of olive oil and drizzle over the pizzas. Bake 10 - 12 minutes, until the dough is brown and crisp and the cheeses are beginning to melt. Remove from the oven.
To serve: Drizzle with truffle oil and chopped rosemary. Slice into quarters.