There is this amazing lady we got to know during our 1 1/2 years in California, who inspires me on so many levels. She is a loving mother, a loyal friend, a devoted worker, a faithful follower of Christ, and an outstanding cook! Right before we moved, she made an Italian chicken dish for us that quickly became a favorite of ours in our own home (after she shared the recipe). I have yet to snatch a good photo of it, so it hasn’t appeared on the blog. But…
…last week, I decided to throw together a pizza inspired by this chicken dish, and it turned out just the way I’d hope! It is somewhat similar to our Mediterranean pizza, because it is a little more “zesty” as Ben described to me. However, instead of the zing coming from artichokes and Kalamata olives, the responsible parties in this pizza are capers and sun-dried tomatoes. No sauce is needed, except for a brushing of olive oil.
Although there is an extra step in prepping the ingredients (cooking the chicken and a quick sauté of the shallots and garlic), the pizza still comes together swiftly if you already have the dough made. So, take my advice and make a batch of my favorite pizza dough now, store it in the freezer, and then throw it in the fridge the morning you plan to use it for dinner. It can rest on the counter while the oven is preheating and you’re prepping the toppings. No floury fuss, and an unforgettable pizza!
- Olive oil
- 1/2 cup flour
- 2 large chicken boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Italian seasonings, to taste
- 1-2 shallots, sliced thin
- 2-3 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
- Juice of one lemon
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 1 pizza dough (store-bought or homemade)
- 1 cup shredded cheese (Mozzarella or a blend)
- 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
- 1/4 cup black olives, sliced
- 2-3 Tablespoons capers
Adjust the oven rack (with pizza stone) to the lower rack. Preheat the oven and pizza stone to 500 degrees F for at least 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare some of the toppings: Heat 2 Tablespoons olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Scoop the flour into a shallow bowl. Coat the chicken breasts with flour and place in the heated pan. Sear for 2 to 3 minutes each side, lightly seasoning with salt, pepper and Italian seasonings. Continue to sauté the chicken until cooked through, while using your spatula to cut the chicken into 1-inch pieces. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Lower the heat to medium and pour another Tablespoon or two of the olive oil into the hot pan. Add the shallots and sauté until just soft. Mix in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Deglaze the pan with the lemon juice and white wine. Cook for another 3-4 minutes to burn off the alcohol and absorb the liquid. Remove from heat and set aside.
Roll out the pizza dough. Brush the surface and outer crust with olive oil. Sprinkle with half of the shredded cheese. Layer with cooked shallots, chicken, sun-dried tomatoes, olives and capers. Top with remaining cheese.
Bake at 500 degrees F for 8-10 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and cheese is melted and bubbly.