Tequila-Marinated Shrimp Pizza with Chorizo, Onions, Bell Peppers, and Cilantro Pesto
- 3/4 cup warm water (110 degrees F)
- 1 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 2 to 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 1/2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 20 medium raw shrimp, peeled, deveined, and cut in half lengthwise
- 1/2 cup tequila (recommended: Cabo Wabo)
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
- 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro leaves, plus extra for garnish
- 1 teaspoon grated lime zest
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- Cornmeal, for dusting peel
- 8 ounces Mexican chorizo, chopped
- Cilantro Pesto, recipe follows
- 11/2 cups grated Monterey jack cheese
- 1 yellow bell pepper, cored, seeded and cut into long strips
- 1/2 medium white onion, cut into rings
- 4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
- Chopped green onions, garnish
In a large mixing bowl, stir together the water, yeast, and sugar. Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes. Add 2 cups of the flour, salt, and 2 teaspoons of the oil, stirring with a heavy wooden spoon to incorporate. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and pliable, yet slightly sticky, 5 minutes, adding more flour as needed 2 teaspoons at a time to prevent from sticking to the board.
Lightly oil a large mixing bowl with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon oil. Place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with the oil. Cover with plastic wrap and set in a warm, draft-free place. Allow the dough to rise until nearly double in size, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
At least 45 minutes before baking pizza, put a pizza stone on the bottom rack of the oven and preheat the oven to 500 degrees F.
While the dough is rising, marinate the shrimp. In a large bowl, combine the shrimp, tequila, lime juice, crushed garlic, cilantro, lime zest, pepper flakes, kosher salt, and cumin. Let marinate for no more than 1 hour. Remove the shrimp from the marinade and pat dry.
In a skillet, cook the sausage over medium-high heat until the fat is rendered and almost completely cooked through, about 4 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels. Let cool.
On a lightly floured surface turn out the dough and lightly work into a large flat disk. Let rest for 10 minutes. Pat and stretch out the dough to a 12-inch round, turning and lifting to make about 1/8-inch thick.
Dust a baker's peel or bottom of a baking sheet with the cornmeal. Carefully transfer the dough onto the peel and reshape as necessary without pressing down hard (so the dough will come away easily). Working quickly, spread cilantro pesto across the dough to cover, leaving a 1/2-inch border around the edge. Sprinkle the grated cheese evenly over the top, then arrange the shrimp, bell peppers, onions, and cooked sausage over the top. Dot the pizza with the goat cheese.
Line up the peel over the baking stone and slide to release the pizza. (Alternately, bake on the baking sheet.) Bake until the dough is crisp and golden brown and the cheeses are melted and bubbly, about 8 minutes. Transfer with the peel to a large cutting board. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Garnish with chopped cilantro and green onions, to taste. Cut into slices, and if desired, drizzle with additional pesto sauce.Cilantro Pesto:
2 cups tightly packed fresh cilantro leaves
1/4 cup lightly toasted pine nuts
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons olive oil
In a food processor or blender, combine the cilantro, pine nuts, and garlic, and puree on high speed. Add the cheese, pepper and salt, and process to combine. Scrape the sides of the processor, and with the machine running, add the olive oil. Blend until well combined.
Yield: Makes about 3/4 cup