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spreezza!

Spreezza!-1

Oh, you’ve not heard of it? Spreezza’s that immensely popular little dessert pizza, covered with marscarpone cheese, topped with juicy fresh fruits, drizzled with  some delectable sauce or other, some even scattered with herbs. Oh, you’ve not heard of them?  I guess I must have made it up.

It begins with a good pizza dough….

This No-Knead Pizza Dough is bubbly, chewy, crispy and better than you’ll find at most pizza parlors. It can be used for ALL manner of pizzas – nothing at all about it restricts it to the dessert realm – in fact I’m the one who’s taken it there. It’s a take on the now-famous No-Knead Bread of Jim Lahey (owner of Sullivan St. Bakery in NYC) who introduced it a number of years back to rave reviews. I posted the bread late last year but if you missed the post and would like to take a look, you can check it out hereThis pizza dough, like the bread that inspired it, derives its wonderful complex flavor from its overnight fermentation. So the only thing you have to consider moving forward is to start it the day before you plan to enjoy it.

Now if you’ve got a hankering for a spreezza and you don’t want to wait til tomorrow, you can always begin with a store-bought dough (Trader Joe’s has a very good one), skip all this that I’m about to tell you about the dough, and move quickly to the spreezza recipe further down. But you might want to return to this dough another time, because it really is wonderful.

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(Each of the following 10 to 12″ pizzas will make about 4 portions of dessert, 2 slices per person. About the same amount would hold true if being served for brunch with accompanying eggs and/or meats and other items. For breakfast, I’d allow more per person…maybe half a Spreezza per person. You can halve the recipe easily if you like. Or make the whole thing, break it into portions, wrap and refrigerate for up to 3 days to use in other ways…like a traditional pizza. Or stay tuned because I’ve got another fun idea coming up very soon! Flavor and texture of the dough will not suffer at all for the extra time spent in the fridge. If you want to wrap and chill ahead, just allow 2 to 3 hours once they come out of the fridge for unwrapped dough balls to rest before forming into pizza pies.)

No-Knead Pizza Dough

makes six 10″ to 12″ pizzas

(about 20½ hours, with only 90 minutes active time)

  • 7½ cups all-purpose flour (3 lb. 1.5 oz. or 1000 grams) plus more for shaping loaves later
  • 4 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon active dry yeast

Half recipe of the No-Knead Pizza Dough

makes three 10″ to 12″ pizzas

          • 3¾ cups all-purpose flour plus more for shaping loaves later (1 lb. 14 oz. or 850 kg.)
          • 2 teaspoons fine sea salt
          • ¼ teaspoon active dry yeast

Whisk flour, salt and yeast in a medium bowl. While stirring with a wooden spoon, gradually add 3 cups water (1½ cups if halving the recipe!). Stir until well incorporated. Mix dough gently with your hands to bring together  and form into a rough ball. Transfer to a large clean bowl. Cover with plastic and allow the dough to rise at room temperature in a draft-free place until the surface is covered with tiny bubbles and dough has more than doubled in size. About 18 hours time, though time will vary depending on the temperature of the room. 

Transfer dough to a floured work surface. Gently shape into a rough rectangle. Divide into 6 equal portions (or 3 if halving the recipe.) Working with 1 portion at a time, gather 4 corners to the center to create 4 folds. Turn seam-side down and mold gently into a ball. Dust the dough with flour; set aside on the work surface or floured baking sheet, and repeat with the remaining portions.

Let the dough rest, covered with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel, until soft and pliable, about 1 hour.

To Bake the Pizza Dough

During the last hour of the dough’s resting, prepare the oven. If using a pizza stone, place a rack in the upper third of the oven, put the pizza stone on it and preheat oven to its hottest setting, 500° – 550°F (260° – 290°C.) (If using a baking sheet, no need to preheat that.)

Working with 1 dough piece at a time, dust the dough generously with flour and place on a floured work surface. Gently shape the dough into a 10″ to 12″ disk (25-30 cm.)

If using a pizza stone - Sprinkle a pizza peel or rimless (or inverted rimmed) baking sheet lightly with flour. Place dough disk on the peel or prepared baking sheet, and, using back-and-forth movements, slide pizza from peel onto the hot pizza stone. Bake the pizza, rotating halfway through, until the bottom crust is crisp and the top is blistered, about 5 – 7 minutes total. If using this pizza dough for a Spreezza, brush with melted butter when you rotate the pizza. 

Spreezza! 

(pronounced spreé-tza)

Now, here is where this whole thing turns so fun! I’ll give guidelines for 2 versions here. I’ll share others as seasonal fruits appear. This isn’t science. This isn’t hard-and-fast measurements. This is Playing with Food! 

for each 10-12″ pizza, you will want – approximately:

Marscapone Layer

  • Marscarpone cheese – 8 ounces
  • zest of ½ lemon (about 1 Tablespoon
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons (to 3 tsp.) powdered sugar

Berries

  • Fresh strawberries – ½ – ¾ cup, sliced
  • 2 teaspoons (to 3) powdered sugar (for strawberries)
  • zest of ½ lemon added to strawberries
  • Fresh raspberries – ½ cup
  • Fresh blueberries – ½ cup
  • lemon thyme – a couple sprigs
  • blueberry balsalmic vinegar – or good quality aged balsamic vinegar
  • OPTIONAL: Additional Powdered Sugar, sifted - you may want this especially if you’re serving for dessert as opposed to a brunch or breakfast


~ ~ ~

One hour before baking pizza dough, place marscarpone in a small bowl along with lemon juice, lemon zest and powdered sugar. Stir well to combine and allow to come to room temperature.

One half hour or so before baking pizza, wash and thinly slice the strawberries. Add them to a small bowl with lemon zest and powdered sugar. Allow them to sit at room temperature so that they can soften a bit and release some of their juices.

Bake Pizza as instructed above. Remove to a rack to cool to room temperature.

When pizza dough has come to room temperature, spread the marscapone mixture over the crust to within about 1 inch of the edge. Lay strawberry slices fairly evenly over top. Scatter raspberries & blueberries. Sprinkle lemon thyme leaves or small sprigs over all. (It will keep like this for at least an hour.) When ready to serve, drizzle with blueberry balsamic (or good aged balsamic) and dust with more powdered sugar if desired.

Serving suggestions:

Now, many of you have come to know Spreezza’s as a scrumptious dessert, but it goes equally well to the breakfast table. It’s not overly sweet (unless of course you ask it to be) so it’s really an ideal treat for weekend breakfast or a special brunch – Easter??? You can bake the crust hours before using – or even the night before – and wrap and leave at room temperature. The next morning, heat it for just a couple minutes to refresh it, allow to cool again to room temperature before assembling. The assembly takes very little time.

Another flavorful & so-pretty combination would be strawberries, blueberries and beautiful thin slices of spring-green kiwi. No herbs on this one are necessary, though if you wanted you could replace the lemon in the above recipe with lime juice and zest, and sprinkle a bit of zest over top.

I’ll bring other Spreezza ideas to share as various fresh fruits become available.

~ ~ ~

For a printer-friendly recipe of the pizza crust, click here.

For the Spreezza, click here.

~ ~ ~

31 Comments Post a comment
  1. This is so gorgeous and simple. Thanks for the recipe!

    March 19, 2012
  2. Beautiful! I cannot wait!

    March 19, 2012
  3. Lovely… what a cool idea for a pizza! This would be such a treat for breakfast.. (she says longingly).. if only spree lived nearer… xo Smidge

    March 19, 2012
    • I wanna be smidge’s neighbor! ‘twould be such fun we’d have! xoxo

      March 19, 2012
  4. I want a spreezza!

    March 19, 2012
  5. You just made me hungry!
    This looks absolutely delicious, I’ll try to get some mascarpone here, not sure if it’s possoble bt I’ll do my best.
    Btw, the photo that I promissed you is already in my blog :)

    March 19, 2012
    • Pablo thank you so much for the introduction to lulos! I can’t wait to meet, errr, eat one after seeing your beautiful photos!

      March 19, 2012
  6. Brilliant – what a genius you are! I could just eat a big slice of this for my breakfast. Please…

    March 20, 2012
    • Come on over Tanya! We’ll have a pajama spreezza party! And bring your friends! I want to meet them!

      March 20, 2012
  7. Outrage, she made up the name!! I’ve had chocolat epizza before, but oh boy does this look outrageously temting!

    March 20, 2012
  8. Thanks! I can’t wait to try this!!

    March 20, 2012
  9. I just made a batch of mascarpone and, had I known, I would have saved it for this “Spreezza.” I love berries with mascarpone and making a pizza with both is a great idea!
    By the way, between “sprinkles” and “spreezza”, you’re killing me here! :)

    March 20, 2012
    • Next I make John’s marscarpone! It’s vying for top of my list!

      March 20, 2012
  10. Breakfast? Lunch? Teatime? a Snack? Spreezza looks like a new great food group. Perfect for the spring.

    March 20, 2012
  11. Val #

    Gorgeous… can I get delivery of a 12″ please?

    March 20, 2012
  12. Spree, you should post a warning on the top of your blog:
    Don’t visit this page when your spouce or kids are any where near the computer

    March 20, 2012
  13. Yum – thanks for sharing! A great way to kick off Spring!

    March 20, 2012
  14. Insanely well timed, as i just said I had to make a batch of pizza dough for the visitors.. oh and i have not forgotton you … the postcards arrived yesterday, so your prizes will be stamped and packaged and sent off to you by Monday!! Yay. I am so embarrassed this took so long, but you should have them very soon.. celi

    March 20, 2012
  15. Lovely!! This dough sounds amazing, I have to try this for sure!! The photos look stunning, what a lovely combination :)

    March 20, 2012
  16. That’s one great looking pizza pie!

    March 20, 2012
  17. Tuesday’s Oregonian newspaper had a little story on page L3 headlined “My Pizza”, a book by Jim Lahey, whom you also credit above for his pizza dough recipe–once again you are ahead of the curve.

    March 20, 2012
  18. Before even trying it I can say it’s “A Keeper.”

    Ronnie

    March 20, 2012
  19. Either *you* made it up, or the dessert fairies did. Either way, decidedly edible!

    March 20, 2012
  20. What a beautiful dessert!

    March 22, 2012
  21. deb #

    Just seeing “spreezza” made me smile – clever girl :-) I cannot wait to try the pizza dough and this scrumptious looking & sounding dessert! And as always, beautiful photography.

    March 23, 2012
  22. you know the quickest way to my heart?… mascarpone. Bam! Straight there.
    …and looks like it flew there on a spreezza.

    March 25, 2012
  23. I made these today and they were even better than what I expected them to be.
    I used my regular dough recipe but I look forward to trying them with your no knead recipe, I also didn’t have any mascarponi cheese so I used a different type of cheese but still the result was something everyone in the house enjoyed to the maximum
    Thank you for the inspiration Spree

    March 27, 2012
    • Oh Thanks so much Sawsan for letting me know! So what sort of cheese in place of marscarpone did you press into service?

      March 27, 2012

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