Spago Salmon Pizza
Although New York has long had pizza bragging rights, the modern American version of pizza with toppings that went beyond basil and mozzarella began in Wolfgang Puck’s kitchen at Spago in Beverly Hills in the 1980s and started a California pizza trend that spread far and wide.
- 16 ounces smoked salmon sliced paper-thin
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 medium red onion cut into julienne strips
- 1/4 bunch fresh dill minced, plus 4 small sprigs for garnish
- 1 cup sour cream or creme fraiche
- Freshly ground pepper
- 4 heaping tablespoons domestic golden caviar optional! But many domestic caviars are very affordable
- 4 heaping teaspoons black caviar optional
- In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast and honey in 1/4 cup warm water. In a mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the flour and the salt. Add oil, yeast mixture, and remaining 3/4 cup of water and mix on low speed until dough comes cleanly away from the sides of the bowl and clusters around the hook, about 5 minutes. (The dough can also be made in a food processor. Dissolve the yeast as above, combine the flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Pulse once or twice, add the remaining ingredients, and process until dough begins to form a ball that rides around the side of the bowl on top of the blade).
- Turn the dough out onto a clean work surface and knead by hand 2 or 3 minutes longer. The dough should feel smooth and firm. Cover with a clean, damp towel, and let it rise in a warm spot for about 30 minutes. (When ready, the dough should stretch easily).
- Divide the dough into 4 balls, about 6 ounces each. On a smooth, unfloured surface, roll the ball under the palm of your hand until the top of the dough is smooth and firm, about 1 minute. Cover the dough with a damp towel and let rest 15 to 20 minutes. Dip the ball of dough into flour, shake off excess, place on a clean, lightly floured surface, and start to stretch the dough. Press down on the center, spreading the dough into an 8-inch circle, with its outer rim a little thicker than the inner circle.
- Preheat the oven with a pizza stone inside for 30 minutes at 500 degrees. After the dough has been rolled or stretched into four 8-inch circles, place pizzas on a lightly floured wooden peel. Brush the center with olive oil (up to one inch of the edge) and sprinkle with some red onion. Slide the pizza onto the stone and bake 8 to 12 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
- Mix the dill with the sour cream or creme fraiche and freshly ground pepper to taste. Transfer pizzas to heated dinner plates and spread them with the sour cream mixture. Divide the salmon and arrange decoratively over the cream. Place a spoonful of golden caviar in the center of each pizza, then spoon a little of the black caviar into the center of the golden caviar. Cut each pizza into fourths and serve immediately.
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