Poached Plums & Edible Orchids
Poached plum jam (with vanilla bean, whole anise star, cardamom, cinnamon sticks, cloves, honey & red wine), shaved manchego, pretzel pieces, arugula, orchid blossoms
Ingredients: 1 ball of dough flour for dusting
semolina flour for pizza stone olive oil salt & pepper edible flowers of your choosing (we found orchids at Reading Terminal Market, but it might be a good idea to just look up edible flowers in your area—you might even be able to pick them yourself!) handful of pretzels, roughly chopped hunk of manchego, shaved handful of arugula
For the poached plums: 1 ½ lb fresh plums, pitted & halved 1 vanilla bean (or 2 teaspoons vanilla extract), split in half and seeded by scraping the dull edge of a knife along the cut side (you can reserve the seeds for later use) 1 whole star anise 2 cinnamon sticks 4 cloves 3 cardamom pods, gently crushed so that the shells open, but the seeds remain inside 2 tablespoons honey 1 ½ cups water
Directions: The poached plum jam can be made ahead and refrigerated if you don’t have time to make it all at once. Start by placing the plums in a large saucepan.
Add the water, vanilla bean, honey & spices, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for a half hour or so, until they plums are soft and beginning to resemble a jam.
Uncover, transfer the plums to a bowl, and increase the heat to high. Let the remaining liquid reduce by about half, and then pour it back over the plums. Refrigerate until you’re ready to use it.
Preheat your oven to 550° F, or as hot as it will go. When it’s hot, prepare your dough using the instructions on the right. Bake the dough for a minute, and then take it out and brush it lightly with olive oil.
Next, spoon out a thin, even layer of the plum jam across the entire pizza. Next, add the shaved manchego and the pretzels and pop the entire thing in the oven. Bake until the cheese has melted and the crust is golden brown. Take it out, add the arugula and edible flowers on top, and enjoy!
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