There are times in life when synchronicity is more important than an agenda. My dear friend Jane who just finished breast cancer therapy called to ask if she could come out to the farm. What she needed was to put her feet up, a respite, a break from the many concerns she had been carrying for the past 9 months. There was never any question that she would be welcome. Within a few more hours, two more friends, Beth and Judy called to join us. We had all met during a woman’s weekend. Although we are very different from one another and range in age from 43-62, we came together at a pivotal time in each others lives. A deep bond was created that has held for over 15 years.
After each of them arrived and settled in we started talking about comfort food. Laughter ensued when we began to realize how many comfort foods start with ‘p’: potato chips, pretzels, pasta, peanut butter, pastry, pizza. We settled on pizza. Jane commented how if she was at home they would order out and pick up. She knew it would not be the case here. Val being Val had made a dough a few days ago from Peter Reinhart‘s Everyday Artisan Breads; thinking that movies and pizza go hand in hand. The toppings would be our Brickyard Farms Pizza: home-made pesto, artichoke hearts, kalamata olives, goat cheese and smoked provolone. We put up dozens of jars of pesto during growing season, when the basil is abundant and flavorful. Here’s the recipe:
- 4 cups basil leaves
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
- 1/2 cup Italian parsley
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 to 1 cup good quality olive oil
- 1/2 cup Pecorino cheese
- Drop the garlic through the feed tube of a food processor. Stop and add basil, pine nuts, parsley and salt.
- Process adding the olive oil slowly through the feed tube to make a smooth paste.
- Stir in Pecorino cheese.
Yield: 1 cup pesto
Next thing we knew our neighbors Tim & Stephanie have dropped by to say hi and meet the gals. Steph brought a roasted tomato sauce for one of the pizzas. Next thing we know, martinis and beer are flowing, all of us thinking the more the merrier.
Brickyard Farms Pizza
- 1 12-inch prepared pizza shell of your choice
- 1 recipe pesto
- 1 15oz can quartered artichoke hearts, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup pitted and halved kalamata olives
- 4 oz goat cheese, crumbled
- 1 1/2 cups finely shredded smoked provolone cheese
- Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees with a cold pizza stone.
- Spread pesto over pizza crust.
- Place artichokes in a pin wheel shape over pesto. Fill in with olive halves and goat cheese. Top with smoked provolone.
- Bake 8-10 minutes or until cheese is melted and crust is crisp.