Recently, I was challenged by one of my Instagram followers to make a chocolate pizza. I’m not one to back down from a challenge, especially one that gives me the opportunity to be creative in the kitchen and improve my skills as a pizza maker. But this request was particularly difficult and eye opening because I have never made a dessert pizza before. Many questions went through my head as I tried to figure out how to make a chocolate pizza but not just any chocolate pizza. I needed to make a chocolate pizza that would taste good. A pizza in which all of the ingredients worked together to form a dessert greater than the sum of its parts. I asked myself questions, such as “What type of dough would I use?” To be honest, I didn’t even know where to start.
My first issue to solve was what type of crust I would use. Initially, I thought I would try a New York style crust, but I quickly abandoned that I idea because I didn’t think a bread-like crust would be good for a dessert style pizza. I kept searching, looking for something that would pair well with the sweetness of chocolate. After a few hours of brainstorming and googling, I came across puff pastry (an unleavened, flaky crust), and I knew that I had found my crust. I have never made puff pastry before, so this crust would be a whole new territory for me. Luckily, I found a good guide at the Kitchn.
Even after studying how to make puff pastry, it was not an easy task. I wouldn’t say that it is difficult to make, but it is very time consuming. The basic idea behind this type of dough is relatively simple. It doesn’t even require any leavening. Essentially, it consists of several layers of dough with butter sandwiched in between, making a light, flaky crust. To make these layers, requires several stretches and folds of the dough, which is what ends up being time consuming. However, trust me. The time you spend making this dough will be very rewarding.
Once I had decided upon a crust, it was time to select the sauce. For me, this part of the process was very easy. I love Nutella! Plus, Nutella is easily spreadable when heated and can be used straight from the jar, which is perfect when you’re concentrating all of your energy on the crust of your pizza. Nutella pizza is a match made in heaven if I have ever seen one. It’s almost as perfect as peanut butter and jelly.
After fulfilling the chocolate requirement by using Nutella for my pizza sauce, selecting the toppings was not difficult. I had seen several Nutella recipes that incorporated fruit, so I knew that any type of fruit topping would go well with it. In this case, I selected banana because I used to love eating banana and peanut butter sandwiches when I was younger, and I felt like banana would go great with the chocolate-hazelnut flavor of Nutella.
How to Make Puff Pastry for Nutella Pizza
Before I introduce you to this week’s Nutella pizza recipe, I’d like to give you some more information and instructions for making puff pasty as it is a little more involved than the dough we usually make here at The Right Crust. Before you begin, make sure you have ice cold water and cold butter (not frozen) at hand.
The first step in making puff pastry is very similar to any other dough. You begin the process by combining the ice cold water, all-purpose flour, and salt in a large bowl, mixing until all of the ingredients have been incorporated.
After mixing the dough, it will need to be refrigerated for 30 minutes to keep it cold. Lightly dust the dough with flour, and wrap it with plastic prior to refrigerating.
While refrigerating the dough, the butter will need to be pounded into a pliable block. You can do this by beating the butter like it owes you money with your rolling pin. You will also need to use flour during this step to keep the butter from sticking. After pounding the butter, place it in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.
After chilling the dough and butter, you will need to remove both from the refrigerator. Roll out the dough and place the block of butter in the center. Then, fold the dough over the butter, like a Chinese take out box.
For the next step, you will need to roll out the butter/dough combination. Roll it out into a rectangular shape. Use flour as needed to keep the dough from sticking.
Fold the dough like a letter.
Rotate the dough 90 degrees then roll the dough out again. After rolling out the dough, fold it again in the same fashion as before. It is important that you rotate the dough with each series of rolling and folding so as to build the layers of the crust. After the first two stretch and folds, wrap the dough in plastic wrap, and refrigerate it for 30 minutes. Repeat this process twice more for a total of 6 stretches and folds with a period of refrigeration between each set of stretches and folds. Refrigerate the dough for at least 1 hour prior to using.
Now that we’ve discussed the general process of how to make puff pastry dough. Let’s move on to the recipe.
The Most Delicious Nutella Pizza
This delicious Nutella pizza features a puff pastry crust topped with Nutella, sliced bananas, and chopped almonds.
- 2/3 cup ice water
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 8 oz unsalted butter (cold)
- 13 oz Nutella
- 1 banana
- 1 handful roasted almonds
Combine 2/3 cup ice water, 2 cups of all-purpose flour, and 1 tsp of salt in a large mixing bowl. Mix until all ingredients are incorporated into a dough ball. Form the dough into a square shape, and wrap it with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
While the dough is being refrigerated, take 8 oz of cold unsalted butter and place it on a floured work surface. Sprinkle some additional flour on the butter. Pound the butter with a rolling pin until it is a smooth consistency. Each time you pound down the butter you will need to refold it before beating it again. When the butter forms a smooth consistency that does not break when folded, wrap it and place it in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.
Remove the dough and the butter once they have been adequately refrigerated. Roll out the dough with your rolling pin into a rectangular shape and place the block of butter in the center of the dough.
Fold the edges of the dough like an envelope over the butter.
Flip the dough over and roll it out with a rolling pin into a rectangular shape.
Fold the dough like a letter. Then, turn the dough 90 degrees and roll it out again into a rectangular shape.
Fold the dough again like you did in the previous step. Wrap the dough and place it in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and perform another series of stretches and folds. Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes again, and then, repeat the process one more time.
After a total of 6 stretches and folds, fold the dough one last time, and wrap it. Place the dough in the refrigerator for 1-24 hours.
Prior to baking the pizza, remove the dough from the refrigerator. Roll it into a rectangular shape with a rolling pin. It should be 1/8-1/4 inch thick and cover a baking sheet. Make sure to flour the bottom of the dough prior to transferring to the baking sheet.
Preheat the oven to 425 F (218 C). Bake the dough for 10 minutes at this temperature. Then, bake at 375 F (190 C) until the dough is a golden brown color.
Remove the crust from the oven and allow it to cool.
Scoop your Nutella into a microwave safe bowl, and warm the Nutella in the microwave.
Using a spoon, spread the Nutella over the top of the crust. Top with sliced bananas and almonds (sliced or crushed).
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