As previously mentioned, this week I’m celebrating Mexico’s Independence Day. Speaking of which, all Mexican food should have a label that reads: “Beware, very hot! Always have a glass of milk, a sweet beverage, or a candy nearby!” Or may I suggest a glass of blackberry atole? Seriously, that deliciously sweet blackberry atole is a great way to end all the usually hot Mexican food. Like this pizza I’m about to share with you. No, actually my taste buds don’t consider this hot. My mom’s chile colorado, that’s hot, and this is not. Unless you’re particularly sensitive to the mild heat of the pickled jalapeños I placed on top. And now if you’ll excuse me I am going to pour myself a glass of milk. Kidding, those jalapenos have nothing on me! *snif snif
Anyway, what a sad week for some soccer fans. There was no GOOOOO-OOOOOOOO-OOOOL, (zero, cero, nada) from Mexico this past Tuesday. Mexico was defeated (2-0) by the United States this week. Nope, things aren’t looking too bright for Mexico’s team and it may just not advance to the World Cup next year. *snif snif
But wipe those tears away… and lets celebrate because I made pizza!
After all, like they often say in Mexico: Las penas con pan son buenas. (All sorrows are less with bread)
And I believe they are referring to this pizza…
This deep dish pizza is not your average kind of pizza. No señor. It’s a pizza with a few of my favorite Mexican ingredients. It has fresh corn, cotija cheese, and jalapeños all layered on top of a generous amount of tomato sauce. Plus it’s made with a whole wheat crust that is unbelievably soft and fluffy!
I made two small deep dish pizzas using my small 6 in. cast iron skillet. So they’re small like an individual pizza, but they’re deep dish pizzas so half of a small pizza is probably enough for one. Unless this week’s soccer game has left you in complete despair as it has left me… (porque Mexico?!!!)
Anyway, this is such a perfect combination of flavors and all that extra sauce at the bottom does wonders compensating for the lack of fatty, melt-y cheese on top due to the use of the dry-ish cotija cheese. But I just can’t imagine combining any other type of cheese with fresh corn. Cotija cheese is absolutely mandatory! But parmesan cheese is a pretty close contender, just so you know.
The salty cotija cheese combined with the somewhat sweet corn on this pizza is actually my own little tribute to those corn on the cobs that street vendors sell in Mexico and in some Mexican neighborhoods here in southern California. They’re piping hot with steam and smothered with a mixture of sour cream and mayo, dusted with cotija cheese and chili powder. So unhealthy but totally delicious!
And it proved to be even more delicious in this pizza minus the mayo and sour cream!
But it you absolutely must, make a pizza dip by mixing an equal amount of sour cream and mayo with hot sauce to complete the whole experience of that Mexican-style corn on the cob. And make it with a light mayo if you’re feeling guilty.
Deep Dish Corn and Cotija Pizza
|Yields||2 small 6in. pizzas or 1 regular size|
whole wheat pizza crust
- 2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
- 3/4 teaspoons salt
- 1 cup warm water
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 3 tablespoons oil
- 2-3 ears of corn (or about 1 cup of kernels)
- 3/4 cups thinly sliced red onion
- 3-6 tablespoons fresh basil (minced)
- 1-2 medium ripe tomatoes (peeled)
- 1/3-2/3 cup cotija cheese (shredded or crumbled)
pizza topping (Optional)
- sliced pickled jalapenos
Whole Wheat Pizza Crust recipe from: girlversusdough @ Tablespoon
|Pizza dough: In a glass measuring cup combine warm water with 1 teaspoon sugar. In a large bowl combine 2 cups flour, instant yeast, salt, and remaining sugar. Make a well in the center and add water/sugar mixture and oil. Stir until the mixture forms a ball. Knead 5 minutes. Add remaining flour but just 1 Tablespoon at a time. Adding just enough so that the dough pulls away and is no longer sticky but still soft. |
Transfer to a large oiled bowl. Flip dough around to coat with the oil on both sides. Cover with plastic and let rise until doubled in volume, about an hour. Punch down and shape into a ball again. Flatten to a disc and roll out to fit your skillet, about 1in. bigger. Transfer to cast iron skillet previously sprinkled with cornmeal. Press and shape up and around the edges of the skillet. Rest dough for 10 minutes on the skillet.
|Toppings: In a skillet, heat oil over medium, add oil and corn, saute until cooked and starting to brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add more oil if necessary to the same skillet. Saute onions with basil until softened. Add tomatoes and crush them with the spatula. Simmer over low heat until softened. Season well with salt and pepper.|
|Preheat your oven to 350F. With the skillet on the stove top, cook dough over medium heat until nicely browned on the bottom. Turn off heat. Brush top and edges with oil. Transfer to oven and continue to bake the pizza crust until partially or almost completely baked, surface should be dry to prevent a soggy crust after the toppings are added. Remove from the oven to fill with the toppings. (I removed the pizza crust from the skillet and baked it on a baking sheet to prevent the bottom from burning)|
|First spread with a generous amount of sauce. Then layer on the rest alternating with the cheese and corn but ending with the corn. Add the jalapenos at the end. Return to the oven and bake until corn begins to brown and sauce is heated through.|
|Repeat with the second pizza if making a small 6in. pizza.|