We make a lot of pizzas at home. And we definitely like to travel outside of the box with our toppings…obviously. We usually make one traditional and one funky pizza. This just happened to be our funky pizza of the night. It was super yummy, with a great balance of wonderful, unique flavors.
Caramelized onions are probably one of my favorite ingredients to cook with. I develop so many recipes using them and just can’t get enough. I love the combo of the sweet onion with fruit (fresh and oddly delicious, off-season peaches, in this case). And caramelized onions are especially delicious when paired with a salty pork product. Enter Mr. Prosciutto. My hat is off to you, sir. I just love the stuff. Serrano ham would be a great substitute, or if you’re from the South like me, Country Ham, (if you thinly slice or mince it), is sort of our version of Prosciutto.
The saltiness of the Prosciutto, the sweet-stickiness of the homemade jam, the rich, butteriness of the aged Gouda and the fresh grassiness of the almost-still-raw asparagus is just amazing. I do hope you give this a try.
*Pizza with Prosciutto, Asparagus and Caramelized Onion-Peach Jam
(the following recipe is for a standard oven, but if you have a wood-burning pizza oven, the method would obviously change)
*For the Jam
-In a saucepan, with the heat on medium low, drizzle a little olive oil and add 1 large onion, thinly sliced. Season with a couple pinches of kosher salt, freshly cracked black pepper and a pinch of sugar to get the onions started on their breakdown. Stir. Once the onions are starting to sizzle a bit, turn the heat on low and cover the pan. Cook for about 30 minutes (or if you’re really pressed for time, bump the heat up to medium-low or medium and just keep a close eye on them.)
-Remove the lid and your onions should be soft and watery. Add 1 small, very ripe peach, diced (or half a can, drained), 2 TB of light brown sugar, a couple more pinches of kosher salt and black pepper and a couple splashes of red wine vinegar. Stir. Turn the heat up to medium-low and place the lid back on the pot. Allow this to cook for about 10 minutes so the peaches soften. Remove the lid and if necessary, use a potato masher to break them down as much as possible. Continue to cook until thickened, about 10 or so minutes more. Check your seasoning. It should be equally salty, sweet and tangy. Allow to cool while you assemble your pizza.
-Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
-Use your favorite store bought pizza dough or my Whole Wheat Pizza Dough Recipe and shape into your desired size on a greased cookie sheet. Spread your homemade jam over the dough (you may have some leftover), top with about 3-4 ounces of good quality, aged Gouda, shredded (I like ‘Old Amsterdam Aged Gouda’), then 3 stalks of fresh asparagus, cut on the bias into small pieces, and 3 ounces of thinly sliced prosciutto, (that’s one pre-sliced package from the gourmet cheese section of your grocery store).
-Place in the preheated oven and cook for about 15 minutes, checking after 10 just to be sure. I like my pizza crust to be soft, instead of crispy, so just cook to your preference.
-Remove from the oven, slice and enjoy!
(For another outside-the-box pizza recipe using caramelized onions, try my Flatbread with Roasted Grapes, Havarti and Caraway)