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A passion for food, wine, friends and entertaining is a big part of our life. This is a way for us to document our experiences, passion for food & life and also share it with others.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Gutsy Cooks Club: Cheesy Roasted Garlic White Sauce Pizza with Ham and Leeks

Pizza for the most part I can take it or leave it ...not something I crave personally. Unlike G who for the most part would choose pizza every day of the week if he could.

So when I choose to "gutsy up" the recipe choice for Cheesy Pancakes with Ham & Leeks from this weeks' Gutsy Cooks Club choices and turn it into pizza it was a shock to both of us.But if pizza tasted like this all of the time I'd probably crave it on the level G does.The original recipe for the pancakes sounded fine but it just wasn't getting me running to the kitchen to make it. But I know I love ham, leeks & gruyere cheese so transferring them to a pizza was much more appealing to me for whatever reason.

I knew if I was going to make his into a pizza I'd need to find a recipe for a white pizza sauce and Food Network and Emeril came to my rescue with his recipe for Roasted Garlic White Sauce. Which was the perfect bed for the leeks and ham flavor.

I started with the leeks although we haven't cooked a ton with leeks my extensive reading of recipes and cooking techniques led me to know cleaning leeks was the important step in preparing leeks.

I started by slicing them in half lenghtwise and the cutting them into 1" pieces and soaking them in cold water and then draining and spraying them with more cold water.

Next I boiled the leeks and then drained them again.

I moved onto roasting the garlic for the roasted garlic white sauce, I went the easy route and used Trader Joes peeled garlic and drizzled them with olive oil and wrapped them in foil and put them in a 450 degree oven for 25 minutes.

I started the sauce by gathering the other needed ingredients.

I simmered the milk until bubbles formed then removed from heat.

I melted the butter added flour and then the warmed milk creating rhe sauce. 

Next I removed sauce from heat and added the roasted garlic using the immulsion blender to make rhe sauce smooth.

Next I started with my dough. I used Trader Joes refridgerated fresh dough as I had some on hand hand but I definitely struggled with getting shaped this time around.

Once I had it to a somewhat exceptable shape I transferred it to our tried and true Pampered Chef pizza stone.

 I've had it almost 15 years and it shows but its still one of our favorite kitchen utensils.I parbaked the dough first for about 12 minutes.

Then I spread the roasted garlic white sauce first...

then a layer of gruyere and monterey jack cheese..

followed by the leeks and Canadian Bacon...

And another layer of cheese. After all it has the word cheesy in its title.

Finally I added the fresh spinach before putting the pizza into a pre-heated 450 degree oven.

The pizza was fantastic. The combo of leeks, ham, spinach and gruyere were perfect. Basically whether if these flavors were together in a crepe, a pasta, a sandwich or like ours in a pizza they'd be wonderful.

This pizza was very reminisent of a pizza from our one of our fav local pizzerarias Katie Downs and their great white pizza which also has a roasted garlic white sauce but chicken & spinach instead.

We served with one of most frequently drank everyday wines, Columbia Crest a 2010 Pinot Gris. Which was perfect paired with the pizza.
I LOVED it, G liked it alot.

Here's the link to the original recipe for the Cheesy pancakes with ham & links.

Here's the link for the Roasted Garlic White Pizza sauce from Food Network.


  1. Seriously! Brilliant.. and Im marking all the changes you did... you go guys... talk about gutsy up!

  2. WOW! What a creative pizza you came up with! I made the Pancakes just as the recipe called for and will be posting tomorrow hopefully... a little late I know!


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