Zucchini Flatbread with Roasted Tomato and Pine Nuts for the Minneapolis Bread Festival

Sometimes you just don’t know when to leave well enough alone.  This savory flatbread was in Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day (2009), and I was making it tonight as a side dish for a simple baked Coho Salmon with dill.  I’m back on a pizza and flatbread kick again, since our new pizza and flatbread book is coming out in 28 days:

I wanted something to brighten up the flavor and color of all those soft lovely green things—roasted cherry tomatoes did the trick.  The tangy acidity was perfect for cutting the softer flavors of the zucchini, parsley, cheese, and nuts.  The tomatoes weren’t in the original recipe, and neither version has ever appeared on our website before, so here goes.  Plus, I’m going to be doing a demo this Saturday, October 1 at 10:15 am at the Minneapolis Bread Festival, and they’re asking for something like this.  Hope to see you at the festival, but if you can’t make it, give this a try here.  Our pizza book is available for pre-order on Amazon and will ship October 25. Continue reading

Apple, Ham, and Blue Cheese Tart, plus: the secret to getting really thin crust (and a visit to White Pine Orchard for apple-picking)

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Apples in a savory tart/pizza?  Absolutely!  One typical combo in a savory fruit tart is blue cheese and pear, but this is the Upper Midwest in October, and our friend Keith Kozub runs the world’s finest organic apple orchard:  White Pine Orchard, near River Falls, Wisconsin.  We went apple-picking with friends and ended up with what seemed like bushels of apples.  This will be the first of many new apple recipes, and it was a chance to play with a better way to get a really thin crust for this kind of tart or pizza… Continue reading

I love New York: in search of great bread

New York’s a great bread town; its best bakeries are really world class.  But if you start sampling restaurants not neccesarily known for their bread, it gets kind of variable. It’s a real disappointment to sit down to a week of great restaurant meals in one of the world’s great food cities, and find that only one of them is accompanied by good bread (pictured above; a Turkish pita with black and white sesame seeds at Zeytin Turkish Restaurant and Bar, on the Upper West Side). Zeytin’s pita, done by a bakery service, has been a bread high point of a nine-day stay in the Big Apple.

But at a fantastic little French-Algerian place, the baguette was comically dismal– it actually CRUMBLED when pressed in the hand (don’t ask about the mouth). This restaurant takes itself very seriously (the terrific and authentic couscous was $38 a plate). Why the gap between food and bread? We all need to complain more (like New Yorkers, which is exactly what our hosts did the next night, when faced with overtly stale Italian peasant bread at their reliable Midtown trattoria where they are well-known to the staff). Alas, there was no fresh bread in the restaurant at 10:30 on a Wednesday.

So for great restaurants with lousy bread, I’m proposing B.Y.O.Bread rules. Make your own and bring the stuff. It will raise eyebrows and consciousness. Meanwhile, here’s a pita recipe that WON’T puff, in the style of Greece or Turkey. Continue reading