East Meets West in This Kimchi Pizza
The Chopped Dinner Challenge is a series of recipes showing you how easy it is to cook like a winning Chopped competitor. Every week, FN Dish will showcase a recipe created by Food Network Kitchens that uses at least one of the Chopped basket ingredients, plus basic grocery goods and simple staples. Consider it your very own Chopped challenge. Just take this frequent tip from the judges: Don’t forget to season!
On this week's Chopped, the competitors found kimchi, gefilte fish, applesauce and lavash in their appetizer baskets. Each competitor transformed the ingredients into fritters, patties, tacos or pizza, but not all of the results were up to the judges' liking. But for this Chopped Dinner Challenge, the featured item is the popular Korean condiment kimchi, which has made it into many fusion dishes time and time again with rave reviews. So why not make this Kimchi Pizza with Bacon? It's a sweet, savory and spicy rendition that serves as the perfect dinner to satisfy your family's takeout cravings, especially if it's looking like a showdown between Asian takeout and pizza delivery.
If you haven't tried kimchi before, it's easiest to look at it as Korea's version of sauerkraut, but a lot spicier. Kimchi is typically made with napa cabbage and spicy seasoning, then fermented for a period of time. Kimchi can also be made with radish, cucumber and scallion, combined with or without the cabbage. It can be very spicy for some, so to mellow out the condiment, this recipe uses a pear to add some sweetness to the pizza topping.
To make the pizza, use store-bought dough divided into two pieces to create two pizzas. You'll want to bake the pizzas on an inverted baking sheet, which acts as a pizza stone, so to make transfer easy, place each rolled-out dough onto a piece of parchment paper. To make the sauce, puree a portion of the kimchi with the pear and simmer it in the same pan you've cooked the bacon. Spread the sauce on the dough, top with the cheddar and mozzarella cheeses as well as the remaining chopped kimchi. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and bake until bubbly, just about eight to 12 minutes. Once it's out of the oven, top with the crispy bacon and sliced scallion. With a little cultural creativity, you can satisfy your family's international cravings with an Asian-Italian fusion pizza for dinner.