Thursday, September 12, 2013

Po’ Boy Pizza

This fantastic pizza is my take on the deep south favorite the Po’ Boy.   A Po’ Boy is a sandwich, originating in Louisiana  and served containing  various meats or fried seafood. Starting with  a submarine  roll that's crusty outwardly,  yet airy and fluffy on the inside, dressed with lettuce, tomato,  mayonnaise and pickles.  Some are served with a spicy Creole mustard and some are served with American yellow.  For my pizza, I used a fresh store bought pizza dough, painted with garlicky butter, and a tangy, non tomato sauce of ricotta cheese, blended with a taste of mayo, sweet relish and hot sauce,which of course is optional.  I dressed this pie with garden fresh red and yellow tomatoes, shaved asparagus, lightly sautéed in olive oil (as opposed to lettuce) and a small amount of  freshly grated Parmesan cheese, baked and topped with freshly fried Oysters, after removing this gem from the oven.  The whole shebang is garnished with fresh chopped chives, torn basil leaves and fresh cracked black pepper!  My brother Ken, who happened to drop by,  really enjoyed it, as did my mother, sister Gayle and myself. 
This pie makes for great 'meat-less' or vegetarian fare by simply omitting the oysters and Vegan fare if you make the ricotta using whole nuts like macadamia or cashews, soaked for 24 hours, ground in a food processor, strained of excess water and seasoned with fresh herbs and soy cheese, and olive oil instead of butter for the crust.  Any way you slice it, this is not your average pie and a great change from the norm, not to mention pretty awesome!
1 fresh pizza dough
2 tbsp. butter
2 cloves garlic, pressed or finely minced
4 oz. ricotta cheese, drained for 5 minutes
2 tbsp. mayonnaise
1 tbsp. sweet relish
dash hot sauce
9 asparagus spears, shaved with vegetable peeler
4 slices red tomato, halved
4 slices yellow tomato, halved
1/4 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
16 oz. uncooked oysters
1/8 tsp. Cajun seasoning
seasoned flour, such as A1
oil for frying
fresh chives and basil for garnish
Preheat oven to 450*F.  Heat oil to 350*F.
Place butter and garlic in small microwave safe bowl and microwave on high for 1 minute.
Drizzle pan with olive oil. 
Fit pizza dough into desired pizza pan and brush with garlic butter.
Combine ricotta, mayo, relish and hot sauce.  Spread onto dough, leaving a 1/2 inch border around diameter of crust.
Saute asparagus for about 2 minutes in saucepan over medium high heat, drizzle pan with olive oil and lightly season.
Arrange tomatoes evenly around pizza. 
Spread asparagus atop tomatoes.
Sprinkle cheese over entire pizza including crust.
Bake until golden and bubbly, about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, toss oysters with Cajun seasoning, then toss with flour, shaking off excess, and frying in small batches until golden, about 3 minutes, drain on paper towels.
Arrange Oysters atop pizza after removing from oven and garnish with chives and torn basil. Makes 6-8 slices.

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