Jalapeno Popper Pizza with Fresh Ricotta, another delicious pizza created on one of our fantastic pizza nights (photobomb courtesy of Finn). The sweetness of the fresh ricotta really complimented the spicy jalapeno and the umami kick of the bacon, which I favor over mozzarella for this recipe. I definitely recommend making your own ricotta or finding a local cheese shop that has it available for purchase. If neither of those are an option, at least opt for whole milk ricotta. This is not an every week sort of pizza recipe, but it is a very tasty one that I’m sure you’ll love as much as we did.
Jalapeno Popper Pizza with Fresh Ricotta
fresh Whole Wheat Pizza dough, handmade or purchased
1/2 jar TJ’s Pizza Sauce
1 Jalapeno, charred and sliced (remove seeds and membranes if you have a low heat tolerance)
2 – 3 slices Herman’s Applewood Smoked Bacon, crumbled
about 1 cup fresh Ricotta, recipe follows
Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Gently char the jalapeno while it is whole over an open flame until the skin is slightly blistered and blackened (optional) and set aside to cool. Once cool enough to handle, slice the jalapeno discarding the stem and set aside. Once the oven has heated, preheat a pizza stone or cast iron pizza pan for 5 to 10 minutes. Roll out the dough on a floured rolling mat and then transfer it to the heated pizza pan. Flash bake the pizza dough in the oven about 10 minutes. While the dough is baking, heat a cast iron skillet over med high flame, and cook the bacon until it is crisp on both sides. Remove bacon and rest on paper towels. Once cool enough to handle, chop the bacon into bite size pieces and set aside. Remove dough from oven and begin assembling the pizza. Spread the pizza sauce on first then follow with a few dollops of the fresh ricotta. Spread the ricotta around in the sauce until it is slightly combined. Top that with the bacon crumbles, sliced charred jalapeno, and a few additional dollops of the ricotta. Bake the pizza in the oven 20 to 30 minutes. Let the pizza rest 10 minutes or so before slicing.
4 cups Whole Milk (I use local milk from Kilby Creamery)
2 cups Heavy Cream
1 tsp Salt
3 Tbsp White Wine Vinegar
To begin, place a med to large colander over a large deep bowl. Wrap the colander with a good portion of cheesecloth. The colander should be completely covered with enough overlapping cheesecloth to keep it from sinking in when you pour in the milk mixture. Bring the whole milk, heavy cream, and salt to a soft boil in a sauce pan over a high flame. Turn off the heat and stir in the vinegar. Let it sit for a least a couple of minutes to allow the milk to begin curdling. Carefully and slowly pour the curdled milk over the cheesecloth lined colander and set it aside in a cool place or the fridge and allow it to drain for at least an hour or so. The longer the ricotta is drained, the thicker it will be. Enjoy immediately or store in the fridge for later use.