Cilantro Pesto Pizza

Still perfecting the art of food photography and I could do without the paper plates, but I think it still looks pretty delicious and my was it tasty!

Pizza Dough (recipe below)About 2 cups grated Monterey Jack cheeseCilantro Pesto (recipe below)Marinated Shrimp or Chicken (recipe below)

Marinated Shrimp or chicken:

1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined or chopped/sliced chicken breast ¼ cup Olive oil ¼ cup Soy sauce ½ cup Dark Beer 2 tbsp Rice wine vinegar ¼ cup chopped Green onion 2 cloves minced Garlic 1 tsp Sesame oil 1 tsp minced Ginger 1-3 tsp Sriracha to taste

In a large bowl combine ingredients, toss with chicken or shrimp and marinate for 30 minutes up to 24 hours for more flavor. Grill until cooked over medium heat, set aside until ready for topping the pizza.

Cilantro Pesto:

3/4 cup chopped cilantro 1/4 cup chopped parsley 2 cloves chopped garlic 2 tbsp pine nuts 1/4 cup grated Parmesan 1/2 cup olive oil

Mix all ingredients in a blender or food processor until well blended.

Pizza Dough:

1 (1/4 oz) pkg active dry yeast (2 1/4 tsp) 3/4 cup warm water 1 3/4 to 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour 1 1/2 teaspoons salt 3 teaspoons olive oil, divided

In a small bowl, combine yeast and 1/4 cup of warm water. Place 1 3/4 cups of the flour in large bowl with salt. Stir in the yeast mixture, the rest of the water and 2 teaspoons olive oil. Knead dough until no longer sticky, adding more flour as needed. Grease a large bowl with the remaining oil, add dough and toss to coat. Cover with a cloth or plastic wrap and leave at room temperature until dough has doubled in size, approximately an hour.

Preheat your grill to medium-high. Once the dough has risen, divide and roll into thin circles. You will have enough dough to make about 6-8 {thin crust} individual sized pies or 2 large pies. Brush your dough with oil and grill on one side until golden brown. Flip dough, immediately add grated cheese to each pizza and grill the other side until the cheese is just melted. Remove from the grill and spread with cilantro pesto, top with marinated chicken or shrimp. Serve immediately.

Alternatives:

Feeling Lazy or short on time? Use store bought frozen pizza dough or Boboli style crusts. Omit the shrimp or chicken for a vegetarian version Try topping with chopped green onions , roasted garlic cloves, sundried tomatoes, artichokes, olives, or whatever veggies your heart desires.

Complimentary Cocktails:

Try a white wine such as: Pinot Grigio, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Grüner Veltliner,Chardonnay, Prosecco or Champagne Other cocktails: Try something fresh and subtle like a basil martini or a mojito.

I should also mention this recipe was inspired by Bobby Flay, with just a few tweaks in the grilling time and our favorite homemade recipe for the for the shrimp/chicken marinade. The original recipe can be found here, and as you can see by its 5 star rating it really is quite phenomenal. Thanks Bobby!