Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Arugula Goat Cheese Pizza with Roasted Garlic and Truffle Oil

After 10 days of living the good life in Europe, it was hard to come back! I can’t believe I have been back for over a week. Everyone keeps asking me “What was your favorite part?”

The Duomo in Como, Italy

Considering I loved nearly every second of my vacation, it’s hard to pin point just ONE thing. It’s Italy. What’s NOT to love??? The wine, the food, the sun, the people, the lake, the coffee, the sites, the crazy drivers, the trains, the shops, the leather….did I mention food and wine???

I will say, that life is completely different in Europe. Life is simple. There is something I admire about that. Shops close mid-afternoon (and while I grumbled at the fact that I was limited to 20 minutes one afternoon because they were about to close) I still envied that way of life. Life moves at such a quick pace that sometimes we forget to just stop, look around and drink the moment we are living in.

Lake Como, Italy

Snow capped mountains--mind you its 80 degreess at the lake!

Street Market, Como, Italy

Enjoying wine at Clandestino in Stresa, Lake Maggiore, Italy

Just before my wedding nearly two years ago a good friend of mine told me to do this. She said “If I could give you one piece of advice for your wedding day it would be to at some point, stop, look around and realize the moment you are living in.” I never forgot that. And to this day it’s probably the only moment of that day that I remember clearly.

I still try to live my life this way, even when life seems to move at lighting speed.

So if I had to name ONE thing that I loved about my trip, it was the small moments, of ducking into a pub or wine bar, getting a pizza or plate of prosciutto and cheese, and sipping our wine or beer along “The Piazza” watching the towns people enjoy their afternoon as I listened eagerly to their Italian conversations (of course not understanding a lick of it….but I still enjoyed it nonetheless).

Trying to show my husband a beer mustache

So here is my version of leisure….Arugula Pizza with Truffle Oil.

I have a way to go as I don’t have an official pizza oven…but if I closed my eyes…I may be able to hear the faint noise of an Italian afternoon.

Arugula Goat Cheese with Roasted Garlic and Truffle Oil

1 store bought pizza crust (I used garlic and herb from Trader Joe)
6-8 oz. goat cheese (or chevre)
4 tablespoons black truffle oil
2 cups arugula
½ cup parmigiano reggiano, shaved
1 roasted garlic head, recipe to follow
1 tomato, sliced
½ cup corn meal

Pull pizza dough out of refrigerator and let it come to room temp. Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Preheat pizza stone in the oven for about 5 minutes or so.

Meanwhile, roll out pizza dough. Sprinkle board with corn meal, put pizza dough on top. Drizzle top of dough with olive oil. Put in oven and cook for about 10 minutes or so (or according to package instructions). The dough should be billowy and lightly browned.

Pull out of oven and let cool a bit. Spread top with goat cheese, arugula, parmigiano reggiano, and tomato slices. Squeeze the garlic heads to get the roasted garlic out, add that to the top. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and truffle oil. Serve.

To roast garlic:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut about ¼ inch of the garlic head off to expose the garlic pulp. Put in a piece of aluminum foil, drizzle top of garlic with olive oil and salt and pepper. Seal foil and put on a sheet pan or muffin pan for 30-35 minutes or until soft. Open foil once cool enough to handle. To remove the garlic, all you have to do is squeeze each clove and it should come out really easily.

Residence in Lucarno, Switzerland--its from 980!!!


Jeff said...

Welcome back and I am sure you are just overjoyed to be home. I don't know if on that type of trip I could ever find a single part.

It is amazing how much different the rest of the world operates and I have learned a lot from that working for an international company.

Perfect leisure pizza and garlic anything is a win win.

Sweet as Coco said...

Oh yes, over joyed to be home ;) If it weren't for our dog I may have extended my ticket.

I really enjoy the European way of life....its good to see that not everyone has to do everything at lightning speeds like we do. Culture is good.


Courtney said...

wow those are beautiful pictures!!

The pizza sounds amazing!

Sweet as Coco said...

Thanks Courtney! It was good--so good I have made it twice since being home. ;)

♥peachkins♥ said...

Hi. It's my firts time here and I love your entries..

Happy weekend

Sweet as Coco said...

Hi Peachkins! Thank you so much and thanks for visiting! Happy weekend to you too!!

Anonymous said...

Ah...Italy...isn't it incredible? My husband has lived in Canada for only a few years from Germany, so I am blessed to visit Europe once a year...and have the fat cells to prove it..the food is toooo good!
Thank you for this recipe and the photos of your trip!

Snooky doodle said...

I love Italy and Switzerland is amazing. Yeah life is different in Europe. I live in Malta a small island near Sicily, Italy

Sweet as Coco said...

Amanda and Snooky doodle- YES, Italy is so amazing...if I could stay forever....I would!!!

Amanda-lucky you for the yearly trip!!! I wish that were posible...there is just so much to see and do!