Pesto Pizza with Feta and Artichokes

Total Time:
2 hr 50 min
Prep:
45 min
Inactive:
1 hr 35 min
Cook:
30 min

Yield:
6 to 8 servings
Level:
Easy

Ingredients
  • Dough:
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • Topping:
  • 3 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
  • 6 cups loosely packed baby arugula
  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 ounces bacon or pancetta, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded low-moisture mozzarella
  • 1 cup crumbled feta
  • 1 cup sliced marinated artichoke hearts
  • 1/4 cup pickled jalapeno slices plus 1 tablespoon brine from the jar
Directions
Watch how to make this recipe.
  • For the dough: Mix the sugar and yeast in 1 1/2 cups warm water (100 to 110 degrees F).

  • Let sit until foamy, 3 to 5 minutes.

  • Stir in the olive oil. In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the yeast mixture with the flour and salt and mix on low until smooth.

  • Switch to the dough hook and knead on medium, adding a little more flour or water if needed, until the dough forms a loose, sticky ball around the hook. Increase the speed to medium-high and knead until the dough is soft, smooth and springy, 2 to 3 minutes.

  • Put the dough in a large bowl, drizzle with olive oil and turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours.

  • For the topping: Meanwhile, in a food processor, combine the basil, pine nuts, garlic and 3 cups of the arugula. Process to make a chunky paste. Add 1/4 cup olive oil and process until smooth. Add the Parmesan and pulse just until incorporated. Season lightly with salt and pepper.

  • In a medium skillet, cook the bacon until crisp. Drain on paper towels.

  • When the dough has risen, preheat the oven to 500 degrees F with a baking stone on the bottom rack.

  • Punch down the dough. Brush an 18-by-13-inch rimmed half-sheet pan liberally with olive oil. Transfer the dough to the pan and press it all the way into the corners (it helps to cover the dough with a sheet of plastic wrap while pressing so the dough doesn't stick to your fingers).

  • Bake on the preheated stone until the dough has puffed and just begins to color, 8 to 10 minutes.

  • Remove the dough from the oven, loosen from the baking sheet with a metal spatula and brush lightly with olive oil. (The crust can be baked ahead to this point and topped and finished in the oven later, if desired.)

  • Spread the pesto on the dough almost to the edges. Top with the mozzarella, feta, artichokes, cooked bacon and jalapeno slices.

  • Bake on the top rack until the cheese is browned and crusty, about 8 minutes more.

  • In a large bowl, toss the remaining 3 cups arugula with the remaining tablespoon olive oil and the jalapeno brine. Season with salt and pepper and scatter over the pizza. Cut into squares to serve.

  • Special equipment: a baking stone


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