I have a shameful, shameful confession to make.
Almost exactly one year ago to date, I went on record to proclaim my newfound love of homemade pizza; I even bragged about the acquisition of a peel and a stone, promising more experimentation in my near future. Would you believe that it wasn’t until a few weeks ago that I finally got around to my second-ever pizza-making attempt?
April’s been a travel-filled month at Casa IF-NY: Prior to my trip to the Philippines (yes, stories and pictures to come soon, we promise), the Carnivore spent a week in Trinidad, making up for our aborted Carnival excursion with a spring-break getaway. His early morning return to Brooklyn provided the perfect excuse for a welcome-back brunch à deux, and, more to the point for our purposes here, the perfect opportunity to try out a bookmarked recipe for breakfast pizza. Bacon, eggs, caramelized shallots, and crunchy, fresh-green garnishes? What’s not to love?
For starters, this dough recipe was much easier to work with than the one I used before—much less messy and more stretchy—but thanks to the pizza stone and its powers of heat conductivity, crust, cheese and egg were all slightly overcooked. If I’d taken it out of the oven just one minute earlier, though, I would’ve been able to claim pizza perfection. Nonetheless, with an assist from a pitcher of bloody marys, we polished off the pie without so much as a drop of hesitation.
A slice of pizza and a personally mixed drink: if that’s not the ideal New York breakfast, I’m not sure what is.
1/2 teaspoon dry active yeast
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons bread flour, plus more for dusting
6 strips bacon
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
2 cups grated mozzarella
6 large eggs
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons minced flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons minced chives
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1 shallot, minced [I sautéed mine in the bacon drippings—so good!]
The night before, prepare the dough: Place 3/4 cup lukewarm water in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook. Sprinkle in the yeast, stir and let sit for 5 minutes. Add the flour and 1 teaspoon of salt and mix on low for 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium and mix for 2 minutes, then increase the speed to high and mix until a smooth dough forms, about 2 minutes more. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface, divide into two equal pieces and form each half into a tight ball. Place on a large floured sheet pan, place the pan in a plastic garbage bag, tie the bag loosely and refrigerate overnight.
One to two hours before baking, place the dough in a warm spot. Adjust the oven rack to the lowest position and set a pizza stone on it. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees 30 minutes before you are ready to bake the pizza.
Prepare the dough and toppings: Fry the bacon in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat until crisp. Cool on a paper-towel-lined plate; roughly chop.
Dip your hands and a ball of dough into the flour. On a lightly floured countertop, pat the dough into a disc with your fingertips, then drape the dough over your fists and carefully stretch it from beneath to form a 12-inch circle.
Generously dust the surface of a pizza peel or large inverted sheet pan with flour and place the stretched dough on it. Sprinkle the dough with half of the Parmesan, mozzarella and bacon. Crack 3 eggs over the top and season with salt and pepper.
Bake the pizza: Shake the pizza peel slightly to make sure the dough is not sticking. Carefully lift any sections that are sticking and sprinkle a bit more flour underneath, then slide the pizza directly onto the baking stone in one quick forward-and-back motion. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, rotating after 5 minutes. When the crust is golden, the cheese is melted and the egg yolks are cooked, use the peel to transfer the pizza to a cutting board. Sprinkle half of the parsley, chives, scallions and shallot on top. Let cool for 2 minutes, slice and serve immediately. Prepare the second pizza in the same way.