Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Chicken Bacon Ranch Pizza


We have one brewery in our little, tiny town. One place that dares to ferment their own beer. The hubby and I are big, big fans. I'll take a draft Pilsner any day over a bottle of any over-produced mainstream lager. It's a good day when we parallel park in front of the 100-year old building, open our car doors, and smell YEAST.  That means beer is being brewed that day. Beer that the hubby and I may be sipping on in a couple of months. This brewery is one of the only non-chain restaurants in a small, dying town filled with Buffalo Wild Wings, various Roadhouse's, and a McDonald's every 2 miles or so. As such, it's one of the only restaurants in town that we frequent. It's our top spot for date night, you can find us there about once a week. While we may go for the beer, we stay for the pizza.



The brewery uses a thin, crispy crust that is to-die-for when they bring it to your table straight out of the pizza oven. It makes a crunch sound if you tear it in half. I love when places uses this type of crust, it's my favorite. They make a specialty pizza called, you guessed it, The Chicken Bacon Ranch. It's the best pizza there, and also, the most expensive. They have it half-price on Tuesdays, so if it's a Tuesday, you know what I be ordering. So, when I had some leftover rotisserie chicken and a few lonely strips of bacon, I decided it was time to make a homemade version. 

And the hubby went nuts. He loved the homemade version, and he's not even as crazy about the brewery pizza as I am. I think the homemade crust did him in. I could put anything on homemade pizza crust and he'll go coo-coo for Cocoa Puffs over it. 


The pizza sauce is ranch dressing, and I think that's part of the appeal of this pizza. The ranch dressing gives the pizza such a distinct flavor, and pairs perfectly with chicken and bacon. This pizza wouldn't be nearly as special with a plain red sauce. I haven't found my perfect ranch dressing recipe yet (a 2015 goal perhaps?) so I used a combination of sour cream, mayo, and a ranch dressing seasoning packet. The hubby really liked the ranch, but as I mentioned, it's not "The One". At any rate, testing out different ranches sounds like something I'll be doing in the not-too-distant future. You could also use bottled ranch dressing for this pizza, or substitute your favorite recipe. 


All right, change of subject time. I only have 2 items on my to-do list today:

1. Early morning doctor's appointment (boo!)
2. Bake Christmas cookies (yay!!!)

As soon as I get home, I plan on putting on a Christmas movie (I think it's going to be "Love Actually" today), getting out my tubs of flour and sugar, and having a grand old time tossing cookie dough around the kitchen.

It sounds heavenly :) 

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!


Ingredients (makes 1 large pizza):

cornmeal
3 tbsp ranch dressing
1 cup chicken, cooked, diced or shredded
3 slices of bacon, cooked, crumbled
1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 tbsp fresh parsley, minced (optional)

Directions:

1. Prepare the pizza dough according to directions.
2. Preheat oven to 550┬║. Place a baking stone on the top rack. Allow oven to preheat for 1 hour. While oven is preheating, remove dough from fridge and allow to come to room temperature. 
3. After oven has preheated for 1 hour, turn oven off and turn "broil" on. 
4. Roll your pizza dough out onto a well-floured surface and into a large circle. Remove baking stone from oven (CAREFULLY!) and place on its rack. Sprinkle cornmeal over baking stone. Move large circle of dough onto baking stone. Brush ranch dressing all over the dough. Sprinkle the chicken and bacon evenly over the dough. Evenly sprinkle the cheese over the dough. Place baking stone back in oven, and broil for 5-7 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the pizza has begun to get browned and toasted in areas. Remove from oven, sprinkle with parsley (if using), slice, and serve immediately. 



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