When I lived in “Little Italy” I would pass by a family-owned pizzeria that filled the streets with all these sinfully aromatic scents that also made my stomach growl in awe. It was there I was first introduced to Twisted Pizza. The pizza dough was twisted into a soft buttery, garlic rope filled with yum.
This is my version of those day of yonder. Instead of a tomato-based pizza sauce, I am brushing the dough with a mixture of melted butter and roasted garlic. I filled it with sopressata sausage, roasted red pepper, black olives, grated Parmesan cheese, and fresh basil.
If I’m being honest it falls more on the side of garlic bread which makes it a versatile option. It can easily be served as light meal with a nice bottle of Sauvignon Blanc, with a side of smoked bacon cheddar cheese for an appetizer, or in the breadbasket alongside your favorite spaghetti and marinara dish.
I have shared this pizza dough in another post, Summer Veggie Pizza, but it is one of my favorite never-fail recipes. In a 2-cup measuring cup measure out 1½ cups warm water. Add 3 tablespoons white corn starch and 2 envelopes active dry yeast; mix. Let the mixture rest for 5 minutes to let the yeast bubble. Adding some form of sugar gives the yeast something to eat on giving you that desired proof that ensures the perfect rise.
Pour the yeast mixture into a food processor bowl. Add 1/4 cup olive oil and 2 teaspoons kosher salt. Pulse for 30 seconds. Slowly begin to add 4 cups of flour, 1 cup at time, mixing for 2 minutes between additions. Turn the dough onto a floured board. The dough will be very sticky at this point so sprinkle some extra flour on top.
Knead, adding additional flour as needed until no longer sticky, about 5 – 6 kneads is all that is needed. Place the dough into a warm bowl and let rest under a warm, moist towel for 15 minutes.
Start rolling the dough into a long rope, working downward until about as thick as your thumb. Twist as you work to prevents it from retracting. Form into a circle leaving some space in between as it is not done expanding yet.
In a microwave safe bowl, add 4 tablespoons butter and 2 cloves minced garlic, microwave 40 seconds, or until butter is melted. Spoon the mixture into the creases filling the seams. Do not worry if some of the yum falls in between. As the dough expands it will be incorporated into the pizza.
Roughly chop 4½ ounces sopressata sausage, 3 tablespoons chopped black olives, 2 roasted red peppers, and 1 small bunch of basil and place in a small bowl. Mix with 2 – 3 tablespoons of finely grated Parmesan cheese. Spread the mixture between the rows. Drizzle with olive oil and season with a little garlic salt and black pepper. Let rise for 30 minutes.
Bake in a preheated 390°F oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown. You won’t need a timer for this one, you’ll start to smell the aroma filling your kitchen signaling its done just before the buzzer goes off. Don’t get me work, still set a timer! This is so good I would not want you to burn it. Take out of oven and garnish with some Parmesan cheese and a handful of basil leaves immediately.
- 1½ cups warm water
- 3 tablespoons white corn syrup
- 2 envelopes active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 4 cups of flour
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 4½ ounces sopressata sausage, chopped
- 3 tablespoons black olives, chopped
- 2 roasted red peppers, chopped
- 1 bunch basil, roughly chopped
- 2 – 3 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, finely grated
- Olive oil, for drizzling
- Garlic salt & black pepper, to taste
Measure the water out in a 2-cup glass measuring cup. Add the corn syrup and dry yeast; mix. Let the mixture rest for 5 minutes to let the yeast proof.
Pour the yeast mixture into a food processor bowl. Add the olive oil and salt; pulse for 30 seconds. Add the flour 1 cup at a time, mixing for 2 minutes between additions. Turn onto a lightly floured board and knead adding flour as needed until no longer sticky, about 5 – 6 kneads. Place the dough into a warm bowl, cover with a warm, moist towel and let rest 15 minutes.
Place the dough between your hands and start rolling into a long rope working down the dough until about as thick as your thumb. Twist the rope as you work preventing it from retracting.
Form into a circle leaving space between as it will continue to rise.
Mix the butter and garlic. Brush over the dough getting into the creases.
Mix the sausage, black olive, red peppers, and basil in a small bowl. Stir in the Parmesan cheese. Spoon into the creases of the pizza dough filling the seams. Drizzle with olive oil and season with garlic salt and black pepper. Let rise for 30 minutes.
Bake in a preheated 390°F oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown.
Garnish with additional Parmesan cheese and a handful of basil leaves. Serve immediately.