Lately I’ve been blurring all the lines between meals. Oatmeal for lunch, waffles for supper, tuna melts for breakfast. Who came up with all these ideas about what should be eaten when? Of course, across the globe all of these lines blur anyway, so while eating fish at 8am feels a little thrilling to me, it’s none too shocking in a global sense.
While I love to rebel by eating a hot fudge sundae for supper, even better are those dishes that bend the rules all by themselves. Like this pizza.
The other night, Jeff and I set out to make a dessert pizza. We layered our crisp/chewy crust with sugar, cinnamon and ripe fruit. But something was missing. Something rich and cheesy.
Really, you can’t go wrong with brie. Has brie ever made any recipe worse? I doubt it. And with this pizza, the combination of sweet and rich, crisp and gooey moves beyond the restrictive labels of dessert or dinner or breakfast. Frankly, this pizza works wonderfully for any or all of the above. It would make a compelling cheese course or a unique brunch. We made it again last night and ate it for dinner with a simple arugula salad.
I’ve talked about grilling pizza before, last year when we made this Spicy Thai Chicken Pizza and I’m as big a fan now as I was then. The crust becomes both crisp and chewy, slightly charred and full of flavor. It works wonderfully with the soft, rich sweetness of the peaches and brie. You can make your own pizza dough, if you like. But I usually take the lazy way out and buy mine from a local pizzeria. Many will sell you dough if you ask. And some good grocery stores make their own dough too.
I like to pre-grill the peaches to caramelize them a bit before slicing them up as a pizza topping. You don’t want to cook the peaches too long, or they will be too soft to slice. You just want a bit of color on the fruit, and to soften the flesh a bit. And don’t skip the cinnamon. It may sound like a strange pairing with the cheese, but the combination is surprisingly fantastic. Trust me. Actually, trust Jeff. It was his idea. Sometimes he’s smart like that. But only sometimes.
Brie, Brown Sugar and Peach Pizza
1/2 lb pizza dough
1/4 cup flour
1 large ripe peach (slightly under ripe is better than over ripe)
5 tablespoons brown sugar, divided
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
4 ounces brie, thinly sliced
1/4 cup fresh raspberries
Preheat a gas grill to medium and grease the grates. Roll out the dough thinly, using the flour to prevent sticking.
Slice the peach in half and remove the pit. Press one tablespoon of brown sugar on the cut side of each peach half. Place the peaches on the grill, cut side up, and cover the grill. Cook for two minutes and then flip (you will lose some of the sugar, but that is ok). Grill the peach for just two minutes more and then remove from the heat. Allow the peach to cool before slicing.
Meanwhile, carefully transfer the dough to the grill (it will bend into a strange shapes as you transfer it – just call it rustic and don’t worry about it). Cover the grill and allow the dough to cook until the bottom gets rigid and slightly charred. Flip the pizza dough (Jeff has developed a two handed method with a spatula and a set of tongs, but go with whatever works for you) and move quickly to sprinkle with the remaining sugar and the cinnamon. Top evenly with the peach slices and the brie. Close the grill and cook just long enough to let the cheese melt slightly, only a couple of minutes. Remove the pizza from the heat and sprinkle with the raspberries. Let the pizza cool for at least 5 minutes before slicing.