Cass House “A Mulberry Pizza”
Following our welcome and introduction to the Cass House, and a little local shopping and foraging, Chef Jensen and I finally got to that new oven of his and decided to create an improvisational pizza based on some of the ingredients we had gathered and that Jensen already had on hand. The result is this beautiful mulberry pizza with two different kinds of cheese (we made one side with each type to see which one we liked more — the smoked blue cheese won out). My favorite take-away from this exercise was the wonderful balsamic glaze that we squiggled over the top — a syrupy reduction of balsamic vinegar and port wine. This really tied everything together and reinforced a long held belief of mine that garnishes are the least understood and appreciated aspect of cooking. They are more than a complementary color or sprig of herb, as many people think, but must fulfill two vital functions — eye appeal (“We eat first with our eyes”), and appropriate flavor functionality — enhancing the other ingredients. This glaze was a home run on all counts.
If you want to see how this pizza already inspired Brad, check out his photo essay in the Instructional section (we’ll also leave it on the home page for a few more weeks), where he created his own version using blackberries instead of mulberries (“You use what you can get,” he told me) to great success.
We’ll be making a smoked fish pizza and a few other treats in future segments but, for now, enjoy this beautiful mulberry pizza and let us know when you make your own version.
Recent Articles by Peter Reinhart
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I was wondering which dough recipe you are using at the Cass House Inn.
We actually used the [i]pain ancienne[/i] dough from The Bread Baker’s Apprentice.” It’s a wet, rustic dough, like ciabatta dough, and makes fabulous pizza but,as you can see, it’s sticky is the handling is tricky. You can also use my basic focaccia dough for this–it’s pretty much the same as the [i]ancienne[/i]. Let us know how it goes if you try it.
Hey Peter, be sure to go over to pizzamaking.com and take a look at the post written about pizza napolitana. Quite a work of art in of itself:
I’ll take St Pats or Smoked Blue so long as I’m on the Cass House patio, Pacific Ocean across the street and Chef Jensen at the oven! I miss Cuyucos.
Another cool site about culinary scene in the area: