Monday, July 16, 2012

Farmer's Market Pizza ~ Food Unchained

I'm not a food snob when it comes to chain restaurants. I've had some lovely meals and experiences in chains and some of my best friends from my days "on the line" got their start as cooks in chain restaurants. So when the Foodie Stuntman (the writer behind Crazy Foodie Stunts) proposed a challenge to members of the Food Bloggers Network to recreate a chain restaurant meal at home I decided to tackle one of my favorite chain restaurant dishes: Uno's Farmer's Market Pizza.


The Uno's version is loaded with three cheeses and has a thick crust slick with olive oil. The vegetables are piled high and the flavors are heightened by all of that fat. If you learn one thing in culinary school it's that "fat carries flavor" and is one reason why this pizza is so tasty: it's swimming in fat (about three days worth for me - yipes!) I'm neither a nutritionist nor slim, but I am trying to limit my intake of fats and so for this Food Unchained post I made a reduced fat version of the Farmer's Market Pizza using a homemade crust, fresh vegetables and a limited amount of cheese.

Food Unchained Farmer's Market Pizza
crust ~ adapted from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day; makes 2
3.25 cups AP flour
1.33 cups warm water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 tablespoon sugar
1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
2.25 teaspoons granulated yeast
2 teaspoons salt
.25 teaspoon truffle salt

Toppings
3/4 cup fresh mozzarella
1/4 cup feta
1/2 cup fresh spinach
1/2 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup red onion, thinly sliced
8-12 olives, pitted
1 medium tomato, sliced
1/2 cup eggplant, thinly sliced
salt & pepper to taste
olive oil, as needed

Combine all ingredients for the crust except flour in a large bowl. Mix in the flour, stirring with a wooden spoon, until incorporated. Loosely cover (I use a plate) and let rise for 2 hours. You may keep dough covered in the fridge for up to twelve days. Dough is easiest to use when cold so I suggest chilling for at least an hour.

When you're ready to bake the pizza coat your hands in a small amount of olive oil and divide dough in two. Stretch or roll out the dough on a silpat.  Cover with your toppings and let rest for 20 minutes. While the dough is resting preheat the oven to 425ยบ F. Bake pizza for 25-35 minutes and serve hot.

The verdict: while not a deep dish pizza this version is still loaded with flavor. I loved the addition of the salty olives and all of the fresh herb flavor from the basil. The Uno's version used caramelized onions while I used fresh sliced onions to limit the amount of fat. However, considering this is fairly low-fat for a pizza I think next time I will caramelize the onions first to bring out their sweetness.


Check out all the Food Unchained co-hosts to see what they created from chain restaurant menus:
Crazy Foodie Stunts ~ Vinegar Brined Baby Back Ribs
Cookistry ~ Cheddar Bayou Biscuits
Living Low Carb... One Day at a Time ~ Outback's Alice Springs Chicken
Oh Cake ~ Uno's Farmer's Market Pizza
Does Not Cook Well With Others ~ Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes
Momma's Meals ~ BBQ Ranch Burger

What is your favorite restaurant meal?

19 comments:

  1. I would eat your pizza over Uno's any day of the week. Thanks for participating!

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  2. This looks really really good! I'm guilty of frequenting Unos every so often so to see this lightened up, my wallet and waistline are thrilled :)

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  3. Ohhhh I have a weakness for pizza! This looks amazing! Love your choice of toppings!!

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  4. Looks great! I'm not able to eat the crust, but your topping choices sound great! I'll definitely have to try eggplant on my next low carb pizza!

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  5. Please cook for me. Every day.

    Love, Jen

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  6. Beautiful pictures - this sounds amazing I love pizzas packed with veggie and using ones purchased fresh from the farmers market is just a bonus! :)

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  7. You are really getting into the ABin5 Jess! Do you love it? I have a friend who is trying to strongarm me into getting it. Worth it? And the pizza sounds great! I am all about Fat Carries Flavor, but how nice of you to tone it down a bit. I like the cheese duo of fresh mozz and feta, too:)

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    1. I like it for beginners, which I am when it comes to bread. I also like that they give instructions for how long you can hold the dough and don't require extra equipment than an average home has already. If you already bake bread then it's not for you but if you're less experienced it's a good book.

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  8. This looks amazing!! I would prefer this dish over deep dish any day! Then again I am a ny style pizza kinda girl :)

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  9. Jessica,
    Your pizza looks so inviting with all of the fresh veggies. Nothing better than fresh veggies and herbs on pizza. Thanks for sharing the healthier version:)

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  10. I love this challenge! I've been waiting to see everyone's creation! I love this and cannot wait to check out everyone elses recipes! Maybe this will help me learn to cook better!

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  11. You did such an amazing job!!! I'm not a deep dish fan so I bet I'd like your version better than the original :)

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  12. Skinnysweetsdaily.comJuly 21, 2012 at 12:50 AM

    Pizza looks so yummy! Very impressed with the recipe. Like your blog as well. :) Pam

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  13. Jess, this pizza looks amazing. I'm going to need a slice... or two.

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  14. I LOVE this pizza at Uno's, but yours looks even better! You're right; it's definitely all that fat that makes Uno's taste good.

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  15. This pizza looks amazing...dare I say way better than Uno's. I would love a slice for dinner.

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  16. Wow, I can't help drooling. I just love pizzas :D
    Well done Jessica!
    If you submitted your farmers market pizza photos to Food Photography , I'll bet this will make you on the featured home page.
    Gosh, you have made me sooo hungry !

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  17. Looks tasty! We made our first pizza a few weeks ago with pheasant.

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  18. WOW! This looks really good. I was browsing for Pizza Recipes, I am going to have a home-made pizza for an upcoming Filipino Party for my sister.

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