Pizza with Italian sausage, tomato sauce, arugula, and cheeses; orange, olive, and onion salad – 9 December 2017

I intended to make a pizza I first made in 2012, based on an epicurious recipe – just tomato sauce, mixed, grated fontina Valle d’Aosta and Pecorino Romano cheeses, and arugula tossed in a balsamic vinaigrette over the top. But. The arugula from the pillow R bought last week was too damaged and I got only a tiny bit of surviving leaves from what we had left. R&E donated their also-dying remainder (in slightly better shape than ours, though – sorta) and still I didn’t have enough to cover a pizza. With D’s concurrence, I defrosted the last Christopher Lee Italian sausage and made a sausage pizza, with the arugula in the tomato sauce instead of on top. I removed the sausage casing and just skoodgled the sausage to cook it, in a bit of olive oil. I defrosted the apparently-last three cubes of Wells sauce, which I thought was a lot but in fact it was a bit less than I usually use (finally noticed that later… 3/8 cup is less than half, last I checked…{sigh}). Anyway, I had heated that in the microwave to defrost and then evaporate a bit of the water, but added back a bit of water when I decided later to stir in the arugula and cook in a pan for a few minutes. I said to D, and he agreed, that perhaps less opinionated cheeses would go better with the sausage, so used a scant 4 oz mozzarella and about 3/8 cup grated parmaggiano, mixed. I was having minor trouble stretching the dough, so quickly resorted to rolling it with my curved rolling pin (fatter in the center); then after pre-cooking the crust as usual for 1 1/2 minutes, I put on the sauce (this is when I actually noticed that three cubes is 3/8 cup – oops) and topped with the sausage, then the mixed cheeses, and baked (at 500) for another 5 minutes or so. It was fine, but not exciting, and would have benefited from more sauce. However, it was also quite salty, and it Wells sauce would only have exacerbated that. I had momentarily thought of adding some margarita sauce cubes I found in the freezer, but decided against it. Probably would have been a good idea.

Oranges soaking up onionness

D wanted to make (and who am I to argue with that?) the excellent orange salad for which he bought lovely oranges back as far as Thanksgiving. OMG. He made a small version – just one orange – and we shared it on one plate. This salad is from Mediterranean the Beautiful – you place thinly sliced red onions over peeled slices of orange for a half hour, top with olive oil and olives (these were Gaeta from the Bowl, the best choice I think) and something hot – cayenne? Anyway, outstanding and unexpected blend of flavors.

The wine was chosen to go with the pizza, not the salad. Another tester from Costco, and we were not impressed with it, and won’t buy more. The bottle says Brotte “Creation Grosset” Cairanne, Cotes du Rhone Villages, 2015. It was ok, and was less rough around the edges than the G we had from this Costco trip, but still, not good enough to buy more.

 

 

 

Lunch (added the 12th):

This was the day we went to The Cheese Board and got both French and Vermont raclettes. D wanted to grill this sandwich on Acme Italian Batard) on our panini press, and that worked great. Also had baby bok choi, sauteed, and some vetiver lassi from Lakshmi Lassi and Chai – one of my favorites of theirs. But it would be hard to choose an unfavorite, it’s true.

 

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