This mushroom and goat cheese pizza uses a sous-vide machine to infuse and perfectly cook the mushrooms for this vegetarian pizza that’s also topped with shallot, red pepper flakes, and a scattering of arugula.
Just when you thought there could be nothing new in pizza, this thin-crusted beauty up levels your expectations. Earthy mushrooms, creamy goat cheese, and a scattering of arugula and herbs makes an incredibly satisfying—and stunning—pie. The simple sous vide technique for the mushrooms infuses them with an intense yet sorta indescribable flavor.–Jenny Howard
*NOTE: Why You Need To Try Sous Vide Mushrooms And How To Select The Right Mushrooms To Use
Why bother to sous vide something as quick-cooking as mushrooms? As authors Lisa Q. Fetterman and Scott Peabody explain, using sous vide on mushrooms not only draws moisture out and makes the mushrooms brown better when exposed to high heat later on the pizza, it also essentially works as a marinade, infusing them with an additional oomph of flavor, in this case, umami from the soy (umamoomph?) and amping up their inherent mushroominess.
Using the sous vide technique on the mushrooms also, conveniently, ensures that exceptionally perishable mushrooms keep longer in your fridge without fear of slime or mold and can be kept at the ready to add to other dishes on crazy hectic weeknights. (You can also keep the reserved cooking liquid from the bag in an airtight container for an additional week and rely on them to lend lend that umamoomph to soups, braises, and sauces.)
As for which types of mushrooms to sous vide, the authors mention that this recipe will work with any sort of mushroom. The ones that show off the best texture and richest taste, in their opinions, are king trumpets, whose large meaty stems make them perfect for grilling; maitakes (which translates from Japanese as “dancing mushroom” and are also known as hen of the woods, whose frilly edges crisp up nicely on top of the whole wheat pizza; and portobellos, whose large, sturdy caps are as robustly flavored as you’d expect. If you can’t find these varieties, the more common cremini—which is actually a baby portobello—will also work quite respectably.
Mushroom and Goat Cheese Pizza
- Quick Glance
- 30 M
- 1 H, 30 M
- Serves 4
Special Equipment: Sous-vide machine
- For the sous vide mushrooms
- 1 pound king trumpet, portobello, maitake or “hen of the woods.”or cremini mushrooms, or a combination* (see NOTE above)
- 1 or 2 tablespoons regular or low-sodium soy sauce
- Pinch salt
- 1 or 2 sprigs herbs, such as thyme, rosemary, or oregano (optional)
- For the pizza
- Sous vide mushrooms
- 1 pound store-bought pizza dough or 1 recipe Whole Wheat Pizza Dough
- All-purpose flour or cornmeal, for dusting
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for rolling out the dough, if desired
- 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan (preferably Parmigiano-Reggiano), plus more for garnish
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 8 ounces fresh goat cheese
- Pinch red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon thyme, marjoram, or oregano leaves, or 1⁄4 teaspoon dried
- 1/4 cup arugula or baby spinach (optional) (1/4 oz), for garnish
- Make the sous vide mushrooms
- 1. Preheat the water bath to 185°F (85°C).
- 2. Wipe the mushrooms with a damp paper towel or quickly rinse them under cold running water and pat them dry. Trim any woody stem ends and cut or break apart very large mushrooms into smaller chunks. (If using portobellos, snap off and discard the entire stem, but otherwise leave them whole. Cremini may also be left whole. Both will need to be sliced later before topping the pizza.)
- 3. In a medium bowl, combine the mushrooms, 1 to 2 tablespoons soy sauce to taste, salt, and herb sprigs, if using, and toss lightly to evenly coat the mushrooms. Transfer them to 1 or 2 one-gallon (3.8-l) freezer-safe resealable plastic or vacuum seal bags, filling each bag no more than halfway full. To ensure that the bag(s) will sink in the water bath, add 1 to 2 pounds (455 to 910 g) weights or a few butter knives to each bag. Before sealing the bag(s), arrange the mushrooms in a single layer with as little overlap as possible for even cooking. Seal the bag(s) using the water displacement method or a vacuum sealer, adding more weights or knives if necessary.
- 4. When the water bath reaches the target temperature, lower the bagged mushrooms into the water bath, making sure they stay fully submerged. If necessary, place something on top of the bag. Cook the mushrooms for 15 to 30 minutes, to the desired tenderness.
- 5. Remove the bag(s) from the water bath. Let the mushrooms rest in the bag(s) at room temperature for at least 10 minutes or up to 1 hour before using. (The mushrooms may also be chilled in an ice water bath, still sealed, until completely cold, and then refrigerated for up to 1 week.)
- Assemble the pizza
- 6. Preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C). Place an inverted baking sheet or a pizza stone in the oven.
- 7. Using a slotted spoon, remove the sous vide mushrooms from the bag(s) and drain them on a paper towel-lined plate. (Reserve and refrigerate any liquid in the bag for another use. Its complex savory flavor will punch up all manner of braises, soups, and sauces.) Slice or break any larger mushrooms into bite-size pieces.
- 8. Line a pizza peel or cutting board with parchment paper. If desired, slick the paper with 1 tablespoon olive oil or simply dust it with flour or cornmeal. Lightly flour a work surface. Dust the pizza dough with flour and gently flatten it on the work surface and spread out the dough with the heel of your hands. Use a floured rolling pin to form the dough into a 1⁄4-inch (6-mm) thick round that fits the size of your pizza peel. (The thinner it is, the crispier the end result will be.) Working your hands under the rolled dough, carefully lift it and transfer to the prepared parchment paper. (Alternatively, in place of a peel and parchment, you can also simply slick a second baking sheet with olive oil and then transfer the rolled-out dough onto it and assemble the pizza there.)
- 9. Sprinkle the Parmesan evenly over the surface of the dough and scatter the sliced shallots on top. Distribute the mushrooms evenly in a single layer on top, crumble the goat cheese all over, and drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil evenly over the top. Lift the pizza peel or cutting board and slip the parchment and pizza (or the second baking sheet, if using) directly onto the preheated, inverted baking sheet or pizza stone.
- 10. Cook the pizza for 20 to 25 minutes, until the edges of the crust, cheese, and mushrooms are deep golden brown and crisped, rotating the parchment (or pan) as necessary so that the pizza cooks evenly. Remove the pizza from the oven and transfer it to a cutting board. Sprinkle with red pepper flakes, thyme, marjoram or oregano, arugula, if using, and additional Parmesan. Use a pizza cutter to cut into 8 slices and serve immediately.