Exotic Mushroom Pizza
- 1 (12-inch) pre-baked pizza crust
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 to 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 shallots or mild onion, thinly sliced or minced
- 1 pound assorted exotic mushrooms, sliced or chopped (if using shiitakes, remove inedible stems)
- 1/4 cup dry red wine (optional)
- 1 -ounce gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
- 8 ounces fontina cheese, grated or thinly sliced (this is easier to do if cheese is cold)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Pizza stone or pizza pan
Put pizza stone in oven and heat to 425 degrees. While stone is heating, brush olive oil evenly over shell and bake 5 to 7 minutes or until oil bubbles. (If using thin crust pizza, you can eliminate pre-baking of the pizza crust.)
While shell bakes begin cooking the mushrooms. Heat saute or fry pan on high heat, add the oil, garlic and shallots and quickly saute for approximately 30 seconds. Do not allow the garlic/shallot mixture to burn.
Add mushrooms to hot pan, saute quickly until most of the mushroom juices have evaporated (3 to 5 minutes), then add wine. Continue to saute until wine completely evaporates and mushrooms have turned a darker shade or brown, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove mushroom mixture from heat.
Remove shell from oven (leave stone in oven to keep it hot) and allow to cool slightly. Spread the gorgonzola cheese evenly over the warm crust so that it melts slightly. You can dip your fingers in olive oil to spread the gorgonzola. Spread the mushroom mixture evenly over the crust. Add the Fontina cheese, distributing it as evenly as possible. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Place on hot stone in oven and bake 12 to 15 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned and bubbly. Cool and cut into small rectangles for hors d'oeuvres or into pie-shaped pieces for first course or main course portions. Serve warm or at room temperature.
This recipe can be adjusted to suit personal taste such as adding dried, red hot pepper or use different cheeses; however you should not eliminate the gorgonzola. It can be served with champagne as an hors d'oeuvre and with dry red wine as an appetizer or main course with a tossed salad.
Recipe courtesy Sharon Angelucci