Thursday, July 13, 2006

Eat Local!

Zucchini and Garlic Pizzetta
Originally uploaded by monkeycat!.
After finishing Michael Pollan's Book The Omnivore's Dilemma and realizing that I live in an agricultural county, I decided that I can do a lot of good for the world by trying to eat foods that were grown close to my home.

As an aside (I promise it is relevant), when Antonia and I were in Rome a year ago, I had a life changing event. Pizza. Yes, Pizza with a capital P. Pizza in Rome compared to pizza is like the Church compared to a church. The best pizza that I had was near the Spanga metro stop - it was mozzarella and zucchini (now you can see where I'm going).

So I embarked on a culinary mission to recreate this pizza. I was able to do that a while ago, but because I fell so deeply in love with this pizza, I have been working for months on improving my recipe.

Finally! I can put together two of my missions - Eating Local (see the associated flickr group that I just started) and zucchini pizza.

Ingredient list
Pizza dough - homemade with Yolo County honey
Garlic - Yolo County
Olive Oil - Yolo County
Zucchini - our garden
Rosemary - our garden
Mozzarella - USA
Parmigiano-Reggiano - Italy

As you may be able to see, Italy is certainly not local. We all have our lines, and they are arbitrary, and they move. For me, its eating as local as possible, not necessarily boycotting supermarkets.

So, without further ado...
Zucchini and Garlic Pizzetta

1 ball of pizza dough, stretched out to a 10" circle
1/2 zucchini, grated and squeezed to remove excess water.
1-2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 spring of baby rosemary (1/2 full grown) finely chopped
1/2 c mozzarella cheese, grated
1/3 c Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated

Onto 10" circle of dough, drizzle olive oil, then spread around with your fingers to make an even layer of oil. Add garlic in an even layer.
Add mozzarella cheese. Instead of grating it first and adding it to the pizza, I just grate it straight onto the pizza. I find that I can get a more even application of cheese. Do the same with the Parmigiano-Reggiano. Mix together the zucchini and rosemary, and spread out onto top of cheese.

Put into a 425ºF oven for 15 minutes. To get the bottom a little bit browned, I do it on a cooling rack, but straight on a baking sheet will work, too.

Eating Local is a life choice for me, but I hope I will have some of you out there join me in my quest to save the world, one local vegetable at at time.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

"Forget the omnivore’s dilemma; this was more like the carnivore’s discombobulation."

Steaks With Lots of Asides

You were the superstar judge on Top Chef... now what?
I'll take the Grade 8, 42-day aged, Ridgefield Farm Corn-Fed Premium Hereford Beef New York Strip Steak. Thank you very much.