Bacon, Spinach and Tomato Pizza is my take on a BLT sandwich, the best part of July!
TOMATOES TOMATOES TOMATOES!
July. The great harvest month of tomatoes. They’re being harvested from fields, patio pots, even window sills, and there’s more ways to use this luscious fruit than we will remember from season to season?
My mom and I once leased out 2-full acres of our 12-acre property near the West River of Maryland.
A farmer across the way was delighted to use 10-acres of our property just to grow stuff on that he would sell at his roadside Farmer’s Market. His 150 acres was used to grow feed for animals.
On this 2-acre field, our neighbor friend grew tomatoes. Rows and rows of tomatoes!
It never seemed he watered them, or pampered them in any way. Just blazing sunshine all summer until late July when the field was ablaze in the color of red! I pamper mine and they are most stubborn to produce!
I will never forget how fabulous those tomatoes tasted. Why the heck folks store their tomatoes in the fridge is beyond me. Room temperature is the perfect conditions for a ripe tomato.
Pizza is one of the best ways I know to make just about any ingredient come alive into a simple meal loved by everyone! When you think of it, the sky’s the limit as to what you can lather a beautiful homemade pizza dough with.
But a great pizza starts with a Homemade Bread Dough. Bread dough is easy to make, rises in about an hour, which gives you time to prepare the toppings you are in the mood for.
A few of my favorites, and trust me, these are only a few, are:
- Sfeeha – Mediterranean Meat Pies
- Stromboli – The Perfect Pizza Bite, all rolled up
- Pizza Kabobs with dietary options
- Pizza Primavera
I will confess that when the depths of winter set in, and I look eagerly to the month of July and the vibrant colors of tomatoes, the dish I long for most, is a BLT (Bacon Lettuce and Tomato sandwich)!
Maybe it’s the drippy juiciness of the tomato in contrast with the crunchy salty bacon, none-the-less, in February… I want the BLT OF JULY!
This mouthwatering pizza is my favorite way to have all the things I love about a BLT sandwich, only on a fabulous homemade pizza dough, and with spinach tossed in a balsamic vinegar dressing, instead of lettuce.
There are three easy steps to making this pizza, so let’s get started!
- Homemade Pizza dough – takes an hour to rise in a warm place, which gives time to cook the bacon and marinate the spinach.
- Marinade the spinach – a marinade of balsamic vinegar, garlic and olive oil.
- Cook the bacon and slice the tomatoes
- Salt and Pepper
- Hard cheese – sheep milk cheese
- Fresh spinach
- Balsamic vinegar
- Olive oil
- 2 large mixing bowls
- Slotted spoon
- Plastic wrap or a dish towel – to cover the dough while rising
- Wooden spoon
- Rolling pin
- Pizza pan or cookie sheet
- Cutting board
- Chopping knife
- Garlic press
- Sauté pan – to cook the bacon
THE BEST BLT PIZZA!Course: PizzaCuisine: Mediterranean
Bacon, Spinach and Tomato Pizza is my take on a BLT sandwich, the best part of tomato harvest time.
Flour – 3 – 4 cups, plus extra for shaping
Water – 1 1/2 cup
Yeast – 2 tsp
Salt – 1 tbsp
Grated hard cheese – 1/4 cup
Fresh Spinach – 2 – 3 cups, chopped
Balsamic vinegar – 1 tablespoon (thick, aged is best)
Garlic – 1 clove crushed
Salt – 1 teaspoon
Olive oil – 2 tbsp
Tomatoes – 2/3 ripe tomatoes
Bacon – 1 lb
Pecorino Cheese – 4 oz grated
Salt and pepper – to taste
- Dough – Pour the water into a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle the yeast and sugar on top. Let it sit for 5-minutes to form a foam.
- Sprinkle salt and a little flour in and stir. Slowly add flour and stir until it becomes more difficult to stir. With your hands begin to press newly sprinkled flour into the dough, turn it over, sprinkle more and continue like this until the dough is no longer sticky to the touch.
- In a clean, lightly oiled bowl, place the dough, cover and set in a warm (not hot), place until it doubles in size, about an hour.
- Preheat oven to 400. Roll out the pizza dough on a floured surface and place on the pizza pan. Brush with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
- Spinach – In a large mixing bowl, toss the spinach, vinegar, garlic 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Allow it to sit room temperature to marinate.
- Bacon – Cook the bacon, either in long pieces to cut later, or cut the bacon before cooking. Drain the fat off and cool.
- Tomatoes – Slice the tomatoes and have ready to place on top of the pizza.
- Place the pizza dough in the oven for 10-minutes to get a start on baking the dough.
- Pull it out and quickly layer the spinach, then tomatoes, topped with bacon, salt and pepper and the cheese. Baste the crust with olive oil one more time and continue baking for another 10 – 12 minutes or until the crust looks golden.