When I wrote this post three years ago, I was cooking mushrooms the way I’d always cooked them. Since then, Farmer Dan has shown me a new way, illustrated in detail in this video.
So I’ve udpated the recipe as follows. Instead of cooking your leeks and garlic first, start by cooking your mushrooms in a hot, dry skillet. Once the mushrooms just start to stick (about 5-6 for shiitake), add your butter. Once the butter is sizzling, add your leeks, garlic, salt and pepper, and cook for 2-3 minutes more, until the mushrooms have crisped and the garlic and leeks have browned.
Original Post: 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.