Anyone who has ever shared a meal with Elizabeth knows of her obsession with mushrooms. This pizza is a mushroom lover’s dream and showcases them with an accent of garlic and cognac, because, in the world according to Elizabeth, less is more.
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided Pinch of kosher salt; more to taste
- 1 leek, washed well (be fastidious), cut into ¼-inch-thick rounds, and separated into rings
- 10 ounces mixed wild mushrooms, such as morels, chanterelles, hen of the woods, lobster, king oyster, or other exotic varieties (or reconstituted dried mushrooms), sliced
- 3 ounces cognac
- ¼ cup uncooked grits or polenta, for rolling the dough
- 1 ball prepared pizza dough, at room temperature
- ½ cup Roasted Garlic Paste (page 164)
- 6 ounces Camembert cheese, rind removed if preferred, cut into ¼-inch-thick strips
Leaves from 4 sprigs fresh thyme or 2 teaspoons dried
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Preheat a large sauté pan over medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the butter and 2 tablespoons of the oil. When the butter bubbles, add a pinch of salt, stir, and add the leeks. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, then add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned on the edges, about 10 minutes. Add the cognac, let sit for 5 seconds, then light a long match to it. Stand back and keep wayward clothing and shaggy hair away from the dancing flames. (If you have a gas stove, be aware that spattering particles may cause the alcohol to ignite prematurely.) The flame should burn out after about 10 seconds. If it continues to burn, put it out by placing a lid on the pan. Remove from the heat and reserve for topping.
Preheat the grill, roll out and shape the dough, and grill the first side of the crust per the master instructions on page 11 for gas or page 14 for charcoal. Use tongs to transfer it to a peel or rimless baking sheet. Flip the crust to reveal the grilled side.
Spread the entire surface with the garlic paste, then with the mushroom-leek mixture. Artfully arrange the cheese over the top. Finish grilling the pizza per the master instructions.
Remove from the grill, sprinkle with the thyme, and season generously with salt and pepper. Slice and serve immediately.