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Blackberry & Brie Mini Pizzas

Soft yeasty dough is topped with caramelized onions, gooey brie cheese, fresh blackberries and walnuts. The mini-pizzas are baked until golden brown and crispy around the edges, then finished with fresh ground black pepper, arugula and a drizzle of good quality balsamic vinegar.
Prep Time4 hrs
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time4 hrs 30 mins
Course: Pizza
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Tricia

Ingredients

to make the sponge:

  • 3/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup tepid water about 80 degrees
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

making the dough:

  • The sponge
  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour plus 2 tablespoons if needed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon table salt

FOR THE TOPPING:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 large onion sliced
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 ounces Brie cheese trimmed of outer rim
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 6 ounces fresh blackberries large berries cut in half
  • 2 cups fresh arugula
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

Instructions

  • To make the dough: Add the yeast to the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the water stirring to dissolve the yeast. Allow the yeast to rest for 5 minutes or until it becomes creamy. Add the olive oil and then gradually stir in 1 cup of flour with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula.
  • Scrape down the sides of the bowl, cover and let the sponge rest and rise in a warm place (about 85 degrees) for 1½ hours. I use my microwave as a proofing oven. It is very warm inside when I keep the task light on underneath. Be sure your dough is free from drafts. The sponge should double in volume and become very bubbly.
  • Use a rubber spatula to deflate the sponge and fit the mixer with the dough hook. Add 1 cup of flour and the salt to the sponge and mix on low for 2 or 3 minutes. Increase the speed to medium and add a tablespoon flour, one at a time, if needed to help bring the dough together. It should be cleaning the sides of your mixer bowl. Continue to knead on medium for another 5 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic but still a little tacky.
  • Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled mixing bowl and turn it to make sure all sides are moistened with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow it to rest in a warm location for another 1½ hours. The dough should double in volume and hold an impression when you gently poke it with a finger.
  • While the dough is proofing, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring often, 20 minutes or until golden brown. Set aside.
  • When you are ready to make the pizzas preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place a pizza stone in the oven while it pre-heats. Cut two pieces of parchment paper to fit the pizza stone.
  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly flour work surface. Divide the dough into 6 pieces. Cover 3 pieces with plastic wrap while working with the remaining dough. Press each piece into a 6-8 inch round. Don't knead the dough or overwork it, just press it gently into the desired shape.
  • Place the three mini-pizzas on a piece of parchment paper set on a pizza peel or rimless baking sheet. Brush the edges with olive oil, then top each with a portion of the brie cheese, caramelized onions, walnut pieces and blackberries, cut side down.
  • Bake for 12-14 minutes or until golden brown. Repeat with the remaining pizza dough.
  • Just before serving sprinkle each pizza with a little salt, fresh ground black pepper, arugula and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. Serve immediately.

Notes

Adapted from a recipe on Southern Living
Substitute homemade pizza dough with store-bought dough, pita bread or naan if desired