Friday, 8 January 2016

Plait to Win!

Treccia di Pane/Pizza con Avocado, Ricotta, Salami Piccante, Ciliegini & Basilico
Plaited Pizza Bread with Avocado, Ricotta, Spicy Salami, Cherry Tomatoes & Basil

Hello and welcome to another episode of, "What incredible thing can I create from a roll of pre-made pizza dough from the supermarket?"

So glad you could join us! And the answer this week is- these wonderful little plaited breads, filled with... well, an avocado and the last remnants from my fridge on a Friday evening!

There is nothing TOO exciting about these little loaves- except for how much fun they are and how fantastic they taste- haha! 

Of course, you could put any number of fillings into these and make them the exact same way... but this combination DID turn out to be a real winner! I would go as far as to say that it is a pretty hard one to beat!

It took deceptively little (as always!) to make for a great, filling snack for two... just 1 roll of pizza dough, 1 avocado, a small piece of spicy salami, 3-4 cherry tomatoes, 2 tablespoons of fresh ricotta cheese, some fresh basil, salt, pepper and nutmeg. And about 45 minutes of time.

These would be great for any weekday night and especially super for a party... or a picnic... or to take to lunch even! They are easy to make, versatile, tasty... inexpensive... and fun!

First of all- turn on the oven and turn the heat right up.

Second of all- finely chop a little handful of basil and add it to the ricotta, with plenty of freshly grated nutmeg, a pinch of salt and a little pepper. Give it a quick stir together and you have a lovely, seasoned and flavored ricotta cheese base for your other fillings.

Simply thinly slice the avocado, the salami and the tomatoes and have them ready, with your pizza dough... to start having a little fun!

Divide the dough into 2 pieces and then spread ricotta down the middle of each piece of dough, covering the middle third of each piece.

Then, make 10-12 cuts on either side of the ricotta, as shown here in this photo... you can do it!

Then lay out first the salami, then the avocado, then the tomato slices and last but not least, a few basil leaves on top. 

Make sure to lay the salami out first and the moist tomato last- so as to not let the base get wet and soggy during baking.

Also- don't be tempted to add too much filling, as this will also lead to excess moisture and a soggy, not so wonderful result. smile emoticon

Now, starting from each outside end, working inwards, fold the strips that you have cut to the left and right of the filling over each other, as seen in the photo... and even this is easy! Much easier than it may look!

Keep going all the way until you get to the center and each side meets and the loaf is sealed.

When you have stuffed and folded each piece shut, brush them lightly with olive oil, add a sprinkle of coarse sea salt and then bake at the highest setting for between 20-30 minutes until they are wonderfully, richly golden and smelling totally delicious!

Spicy salami and mild avocado, creamy ricotta with basil and tomato... truly a combination made in heaven... but baked in your oven!

Colorful, delicious, easy and totally delightful in so many more ways... just make them and see! And you will find yourself making them again and again! They really are so much fun!

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