Tag: pizza

Recipe: Leek, Shiitake, and Garlic Pizza

I’ve posted before about the Perkins’ Friday night pizza tradition, back when our family used to watch a movie together as we munched.  Sadly, movie nights have become a thing of the past.  Now we have Pizza and Pokemon nights.  That’s right, and since Dan and I didn’t play this as children, we go with the house rules made up by our 8-year-old and 6-year-old.  Therefore, now that Friday nights aren’t quite as relaxing as they used to be, I find it extremely important that I eat not just any pizza, but that I eat delicious pizza, where each bite provides brief moments of reprieve from my cluelessness about the Pokemon game and subsequent inability to truly win.  (What can I say, I grew up in a family of competitive board/card gaming!)


I usually make myself a pizza with caramelized onions, sliced pears, and goat cheese, but since I didn’t have any pears, I decided to try something new.  After rummaging through the fridge, I found leeks and shiitake mushrooms–and I am so glad I did.

I started with the all-important step of preheating my oven with my pizza stone inside.  (Nothing worse when making pizza than discovering that yes, my oven is hot, but the stone’s still in the cupboard!)  Because I was using Udi’s gluten free pizza crust, which you can find in DeMotte at Tysens Family Market, I only heated my oven to 375 F.

About a half hour later, I heated 2 tablespoons of butter in my trusty small cast iron skillet over medium heat.  As the butter heated, I thinly sliced 2 leeks, thickly sliced 4 shiitake mushrooms, and minced 2 cloves of garlic (all produce from our farm!).  Once the butter was bubbling, I threw in the leeks, sauteing them for about 2 minutes.  Then I added the mushrooms, garlic, a sprinkling of sea salt and freshly ground pepper, and sauteed for another minute.

At this point, I placed my Udi’s crust on the stone and baked it for 2 minutes on its own.  Then I pulled it out of the oven, brushed about 1 1/2 teaspoons of olive oil over the top, covered the crust with 3 ounces of sliced fresh mozzarella, and added my leek/garlic/shiitake toppings.  To finish it off, I sprinkled Parmesan, freshly ground pepper, and fleur de sel (thanks to farm member Anne Kingma for introducing me to this French sea salt!) over the top.  

I baked the pizza for 7 minutes, then broiled the top on high for about 2 minutes, checking on it every 30 seconds at the for the first minute, every 15 seconds for the second.


Then, because Dan and our two youngest weren’t home yet, I waited.  Harper and I went out on what we call Perkins’ Mountain (compost covered with tarp in the field) and we wrapped ourselves in a blanket and watched the sunset.  Turns out sitting there with my son in the midst of so much beauty provided all the peace I needed to get me through another Friday night Pokemon battle.

Leek, Shiitake, and Garlic Pizza
Comforting and flavorful pizza.
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  1. 1 Udi's gluten free pizza crust
  2. 2 T butter
  3. 2 leeks, white part only, thinly sliced
  4. 4 shiitake mushrooms, tops only, thickly sliced
  5. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  6. salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  7. 1 1/2 tsp olive oil
  8. 3 ounces fresh mozzarella
  9. 1 T grated Parmesan
  10. freshly ground pepper, to taste
  11. fleur de sel, to taste
  1. Place pizza stone in oven. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. While oven is heating, prepare ingredients. Once oven is at 375, wait about 30 minutes before baking pizza.
  3. Melt butter in cast iron skillet over medium heat. Once butter is bubbling, add leeks and saute for 2 minutes.
  4. Add mushrooms, garlic, salt and pepper and saute 1 minute. Remove skillet from heat.
  5. Place pizza crust on stone. Bake for 2 minutes.
  6. Remove crust and stone from oven. Brush crust with olive oil. Place cheese slices on top of crust. Cover cheese with leek/shiitake/garlic topping. Sprinkle Parmesan, pepper, and fleur de sel on top.
  7. Bake for 7 minutes, then broil on high for around 2 minutes, checking pizza every 30 seconds for first minute and every 15 second minute. Remove when cheese begins to brown.
  8. Enjoy!
Perkins' Good Earth Farm https://perkinsgoodearthfarm.com/

Recipe: Baby Beet Greens with Caramelized Onions, Pears, and Goat Cheese

Flowers of spring

Nearly every Friday at the Perkins’ household, we have Family Movie Night together. The evening basically involves eating pizza on the couch, sipping root beer, and watching a kid-appropriate movie, then dealing with two over-excited boys who would rather battle whatever villain we just encountered in the movie than go to bed.

My boys prefer plain cheese pizza. Dan and I, however, like our pizza topped with caramelized onions, thin slices of pear, mozzarella, parmesan, and goat cheese. So every Friday afternoon around three, I heat a few pats of butter and a little olive oil in the cast iron skillet, slice a couple onions, and, slowly, our home fills with the aroma of onions cooking down into savory-sweetness.

Pizza with carmelized onions and goat cheese

 What does all this have to do with a salad? Well, one time, a while back, I got a little carried away with the toppings prep, and I ended up with more than we could put on a pizza. At our house, leftovers have a tendency to end up on a bed of greens. The onions/pears/goat cheese combo was no exception—and we discovered it was just as good as a salad as it was on a pizza.

Carmelized onions and pear salad

You’ll want to start this recipe by caramelizing the onions, as this process takes a little while. I begin by heating my cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Once it’s hot, I add the fats—butter and olive oil—and wait for them to sizzle. Meanwhile, thinly slice (about 1/8”) two large yellow onions, then toss them in the skillet, stir them around to coat with the butter and oil, and turn the heat to low. Now you’re going to let them cook down for 45-60 minutes, stirring them every 10 minutes or so. The key to caramelizing onions is allowing them to cook slowly (for more details, check out this site), so now is a good time to prep your other ingredients.

Thinly slice three small pears—I use d’Anjou here—and set aside. Trim the stems from your baby beet greens, and place in a salad bowl for a family-style meal or on small plates for individual servings. A quick note here on the greens. I’m using beet greens in this recipe because their firm texture holds up well under the heated onions and pears which will eventually top them, and because I like their subtle, earthy beet flavor. They’re also incredibly good for you, including nutrients such as choline and folate. If you don’t have beet greens, try spinach or a salad mix.

Now it’s time to go back to those onions. Once they’re finished cooking, you’re ready to deglaze and scrape up the little bits of flavor on the bottom of the skillet. I used ¼ cup cooking sherry today, but sometimes I use balsamic vinegar if I’m in the mood for a little kick. If you don’t have either of those in the house, try wine or even water for this step.

Leaving the onions in the skillet and the heat on low, add your sliced pears to the skillet and gently stir, combining them with the onions. Cook the onion and pears together for about five minutes, just enough to soften the pears but not so much that they start falling apart. Add salt and ground pepper to taste.

Your salad’s almost ready! Spoon the hot onion/pear mix onto your bed of greens. Sprinkle goat cheese and freshly grated parmesan over the top—the goat cheese should melt just a little as it makes contact with the pears and onions.

Now go ahead and enjoy your salad. And you never know. You might even have enough toppings left over to make a pizza. 

Salad with pears and pizza


Photography and Food Styling: Anne Kingma

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