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Thursday, January 20, 2011

Laid Back Ladies' Night: Fancy Pants Pizzas

When my girlfriends and I scheduled a Ladies' Night for the weekend after NYE, I knew right away that a nice laid back evening at home would be just what we needed to recover from the rush of the holidays. And since I was hosting, I thought Build Your Own Pizzas, preceded by hot chocolate and vanilla steamers, and followed by chocolate fondue with fruit would be just. what. we. needed. I dare say I was right on the money.

We ended up making a Roasted Butternut Squash and Ricotta pizza...
a pizza featuring roasted garlic, fresh spinach, and roasted cherry tomatoes, topped with mozzarella...
and a Fig & Prosciutto pizza (from Todd English's Figs restaurant) that I have tried to reproduce about 3 times now, and *finally* hit the nail on the head.
The key is the balsamic fig jam, for which I had tried to substitute store-bought fig spread in the past. This time I decided to make it myself and it was spot on...I combined butter, chopped dried figs, balsamic vinegar, water, salt, black pepper, sugar, and dried rosemary in a saucepan and cooked it down for about 1 hour. Spread that on your dough, add prosciutto and shaved Parmesan.* Top with chopped scallions before serving, and you have got one tasty fancy pants pizza!

*Todd English's version also features Gorgonzola. Mine didn't, because...well...I forgot. But it was a fortuitous mistake, since not everyone in my world loves the stinky bleus. :)

P.S.-It's so much fun cooking with girlfriends! In the last couple of months, I have also teamed up with my girls to braid 15 loaves of Vánočka, create a glorious NYE smörgåsbord, and make delicious homemade tamales (documented by LB *here*). Good times.


  1. "...butter, chopped dried figs, balsamic vinegar, water, salt, black pepper, sugar, and dried rosemary..."

    Now that sounds like a winning combination if ever I've heard!! Just regular old dried figs? Oh yum! And pair it with gorgonzola? Why thank you, yes please!

  2. Yup, Susie...just regular dried figs. I picked mine up at Stop & Shop, nothing special.