From my Mum Secret Kitchen Lab…

Dollops add taste to great pizzas…

I still remember the first time I ate a pizza with dollops of cheese; it was at my mum “secret kitchen lab” (our basement) while prepping for one of my famous birthday party… She added dollops of ricotta, making that pizza go from interesting to amazing! On that occasion, she used smoked scamorza cheese, plus thinly slicer pear and walnut…

Ricotta is classic dollop. Pre- or post-bake, the soft, creamy and somewhat sweet ricotta is versatile and punctuates the flavour of salty meat pizza or an earthy mushroom one.

Since that ricotta dollop moment, I’ve encountered a variety of cheeses dolloped on countless speciality pizzas. The one commonality is that there are no rules. Pre- or post-bake is partial to the pizzeria and pizza maker. Dollops can be as small as a penny or as large as a 50p coin. They can go with rustic application by hand or by spoon. If you want uniformity, try piping the dollop. It leaves less mess on the makeline. You can even use different shaped tips for the various dollops you use. Some cheeses will require thinning with cream to create optimal consistency for piping.

Let’s look at other cheeses that can put the exclamation mark on your speciality pizzas.

  • Goat Cheese. Chévre has a distinctively tart flavour. Typically, its texture is soft and creamy and can be applied pre- and post-bake. Delicious combinations include prosciutto and arugula or caramelized onion and mushroom.
  • Mascarpone. Technically considered a curdled cream, the soft, delicate mascarpone is buttery rich. It has a light, and sweet flavour and its smooth texture makes mascarpone a perfect post-bake dollop. Try a mascarpone finish on a pizza with roasted tomatoes, olives and pancetta or a dessert pizza with figs and honey.
  • Cream Cheese. While a bit unorthodox for traditionalists (don’t tell my mum…), the tangy, soft and sweet cheese is gaining popularity and shares similarities with mascarpone. Cream cheese atop a jalapeño and bacon or pepperoni pizza is a winner. Artichokes and spinach also complement cream cheese well.

Whip It Good

Whipping cheese can allow you to dollop a cheese that doesn’t have the exact consistency for the application. There are several ways to whip various cheeses into shape.

  • Feta. This is a technique similar to a Greek Tyrosalata recipe where Greek yogurt, garlic, olive oil and herbs are pulsed in a food processor to a smooth consistency. Try a chicken and pesto pizza finished with a whipped feta.
  • Bleu Cheese. Whipping up bleu cheese is as easy as blending in cream cheese or heavy whipping cream. Blow customers’ minds with this addition to a buffalo chicken pizza.
  • Parmesan. Change the profile of Parmesan by blending it with heavy whipping cream. Thicken it up with another cheese like fontina. Finish a four-cheese pizza with a whipped Parmesan for extra zip.
  • Other stronger cheeses. Experiment with your favourite cheeses to create a whipped cheese that is uniquely yours.

Flavours can be infused during whipping to give the cheese a one-of-a-kind flavour. Some enhancements include adding honey and lemon; garlic, Parmesan and parsley; lemon and herbs (thyme, rosemary, fennel or dill); or pumpkin and maple syrup.

Beyond Cheese

Test other dollop variations that are still in the dairy family, like crème fraiche, Fromage blanc, crema, sour cream or yogurt. Since the liquid content is so high in these options, they perform better as post-bake pizza toppings.

“Yogurt cheese” is made from Greek yogurt and salt strained through a cheese cloth, that is refrigerated to allow to drain. Yogurt cheese can be a great addition to a Mediterranean pizza or Greek-style pizza.

Dollops don’t always come in the form of dairy products. Red sauce, guacamole, pesto, fruit jam, aioli, garlic, lardo and hazelnut spread can all be dolloped on a fresh pizza.

If you have a plant-based following, there are even vegan dollop options, including whipped coconut milk or cashew cream.

Just in time for autumn, add your flair to this autumn pizza:

“When-September-Ends” Pizza

  • 1 12″ PizzaSi Semolina Flour Pizza Bases
  • ¾ cup chopped Applewood smoked bacon
  • ¾ cup pureed pumpkin, seasoned with salt, pepper and allspice
  • ¾ cup smoked mozzarella
  • 3 tablespoons shaved Parmesan
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
  • Fresh sage
  • 2 tablespoons dark maple syrup
  • 2 cups full fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • Extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

  1. Add Greek yogurt to cheese clothes.
  2. Place cheese cloth into colander over a bowl to discard liquid and refrigerate overnight.
  3. Blend together ¼ cup pumpkin, maple syrup, salt, heavy whipping cream and thickened yogurt. Load piping bag with mixture and refrigerate.
  4. Take one 12″ Pizzasi pizza bases and spread olive oil over dough.
  5. Distribute smoked mozzarella evenly.
  6. Add remaining pumpkin in dollops.
  7. Crumble bacon over pizza.
  8. Add pinch of salt.
  9. Bake until golden brown, 3 minutes in oone of the PizzaSi stone base oven
  10. Remove yogurt blend from refrigerator.
  11. Take the pizza out of the oven and pipe dollops of yogurt mix around pizza.
  12. Finish with shaved Parmesan, fresh sage and drizzle of maple syrup.

PizzaSi makes it very easy to deliver great Pizzas to your guests, easily consistently while reducing overheads…

Discover our range of premium artisan Pizza bases: all hand-stretched, fresh not frozen, light, thin and crispy, as per the Italian tradition.

Just add toppings!

Get in touch now, and our development chefs will assist in making your Pizza menu the ultimate experience for your guests!

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Stefano Laudadio