Meatball Bruschetta Summer Pizza

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I had a pound of ground beef thawing in the fridge the other night and I needed to make pizza dough to replenish my freezer supply for quick weeknight dinners.  Meatball pizza was the first thing that popped in my mind.  Then I noticed the abundance of fresh tomatoes, green pepper, and zucchini piling up on the counter from both our garden and our purchases from Clyde’s Fresh Produce (our very favorite summer road side stand in Columbia County!  They’re also downtown at the Augusta Market every Saturday).

I threw this dinner together on a whim so I didn’t photograph a step by step recipe guide.  It wasn’t until it came out of the oven that I knew this was going to be something so delicious that it needed to be shared with the world…  or at least the people who look at this blog.

This quick pizza dough recipe makes enough for two crusts.  After I make the dough but before it rises, I divide it in half and shape half in to a disc to be frozen for a later use.  The next crazy-busy day we have, I’ll thaw it in a bowl on the counter for 3-4 hours before rolling out and baking.

Also know that I will not judge you if you go to Publix and pick up fresh pizza dough from their bakery.  It makes a great pizza.  I know because I sometimes drop in and get it myself when I’m too lazy to stock up on homemade.

Pizza dough recipe (for 2 crusts):

  • 1 tbsp active dry yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  1. Pour yeast and sugar in to warm water.
  2. In a food processor, pour flour and salt, pulsing a few times to mix.
  3. Add yeast mixture to the food processor slowly, pulsing every so often for absorption.
  4. Pulse the mixture until a clean dough forms, pulling away from the sides of the processor.  (If you plan on freezing one of the crusts, divide dough in half now and shape half in to a disc to place in the freezer for another night)
  5. Place dough into a oiled bowl, cover with a tea towel, and rise until doubled (about 90 minutes).
  6. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees, add sauce and toppings to your dough, bake for 20 minutes or until crust is nice and golden.

 

Meatball recipe:

  • 1/2 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 tsp diced onion
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • pepper to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine all ingredients, roll into golf ball sized meatballs and place in an oiled oven-safe dish.  Drizzle some olive oil and bruschetta over the meatballs.
  3. Bake for 20 minutes.

(Since most of us have ground beef by the pound, you can always double this recipe and save the other half in the freezer for another night.  Mmmmm, BBQ meatballs!)

 

Bruschetta recipe:

  • 5 Roma tomatoes (or 1 large tomato)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • a healthy sprinkling of basil
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Mix all ingredients together.  Delicious on pizza, drizzled over a crusty baguette with extra olive oil, or on crackers.  The list is pretty much endless.

 

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I rolled out my prepared dough on my pizza pan, poured some bruschetta over top of it for the sauce and added 3 slices of cheddar cheese (I was all out of mozzarella, but I’m not too picky!).  I then placed my cooked meatballs over the cheese and started adding fresh summer veggies:  1 medium zucchini, sliced/chopped; 2 small green peppers, diced; a handful of sun dried tomatoes; a handful of chopped onion; the remainder of the bruschetta; a drizzle of olive oil; and about a half cup of shredded Parmesan cheese.

I placed the pizza in my preheated oven at 400 degrees and baked for 20 minutes.  I added some olives once it was done baking as a finishing touch.

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Mushrooms, garlic, marinara sauce, and artichokes would all be delicious on this pizza, too.  There are so many possibilities, you can use this as a starting point and add your favorite veggies or whatever you happen to have on hand!

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