I have two kitchens and it’s a serious pain in the rear. Sure, it sounds glamourous. Twice the space, twice the equipment, and twice the fun — just like an ad for DoubleMint gum, right? Well, it’s not that glam. I’m not tossing my hair back and kicking up a heel while flipping a pancake. Nor am I hopping on a tandem bike with my cooking twin and whizzing across town.
My Los Angeles kitchen has pretty much everything I could need while the San Francisco kitchen, where I spend a fraction of the time, is a more lean, minimalist version. But you know what? Rather than freaking me out about not having my favorite knife or cast iron skillet, the SF kitchen keeps me on my toes. So, I’ve learned to have some essentials and keep a few things always on hand — like frozen pizza dough, potatoes, and good olive oil.
This week those essentials came together to make an easy, quick pizza topped with big gobs of pureed sorrel fresh from the market. So, you see, I have two kitchens. And though it’s not practical, and really isn’t double the fun, it certainly keeps me creative.
divided plus more for drizzling
sliced paper thin
For the sorrel pesto: Combine garlic, nuts, 1/3 cup of the olive oil, a pinch of salt, and some freshly ground black pepper in a mini food processor. Process until mixture is smooth and emulsified. Add sorrel leaves and lemon juice puree until smooth. If the mixture is thick, add a few tablespoons of water, and pulse until lighter in color and well mixed. Stir in lemon zest, taste and add more salt or pepper, as desired.
Sorrel is an herb that resembles spinach but has a slight sour, almost lemony taste. Look for it in the springtime at the farmer’s market or your local gourmet food store. Use this puree to top pizzas, eggs, or fish or use the leaves in a simple green salad.
For the pizza: Heat oven to 425°F and arrange and a rack in the middle. Drizzle the baking sheet with some olive oil and place it on the rack while oven heats up. Cut the leeks in half lengthwise and then slice them into 1/4-inch thick half moon shapes. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. When oil shimmers, add leeks and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Stir to coat in oil then add potato slices. Cook, stirring rarely, until potatoes are slightly softened and golden, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and reserve.
Meanwhile, place dough on lightly floured parchment paper, and, using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll to an 12-by-10-inch rectangle. Pierce the dough in several places to prevent it from bubbling up unevenly.
Scatter Pecorino evenly over the dough, leaving a 1-inch border. Evenly distribute leek mixture then top with dollops of ricotta every few inches. Brush the border of the pizza crust with oil and drizzle the top with a few spoonfuls of olive oil. Using the parchment paper to help, carefully place the pizza (with the parchment paper) on the hot baking sheet in the oven.
Bake until crust is crispy, cheese is melted and starting to brown, and underside of dough is golden brown, about 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from oven, slice into pieces, top each piece with a spoonful of the sorrel puree, drizzle with additional olive oil, top with a sprinkling of salt, and serve immediately.
Food photography and styling by Aida Mollenkamp