Pizza with Clams, Bacon & Arugula

I lost my appetite during a recent bought of illness. Feeding *this* cold was not an option. It takes a lot for m to loose my appetite, so I knew that this was serious. After spending the better part of a week in bed, at 2:45 on that Friday afternoon, I knew that things were about to get better. How? I had my first real food thought in a week and it was strong enough to make me salivate. Yes, just thinking about food made me salivate.  I knew that I was on the mend when I was physically salivating thinking about pizza with clams. 
Pizza with Clams, Bacon & Mozzarella about to go into the oven


Usually, when I get food thoughts like this, it takes me at least a few days to act on them. Find a recipe, buy ingredients, find the time to make it, etc. But in this case, I knew that it was going to be satisfied that night! I didn’t have a particular dinner planned and this was going to be perfect! Involve the kids a little bit and everyone would be thrilled. I’d buy all of the ingredients on the way home from picking up #3.

Cast of Characters from top left, Arugula, Whole Wheat Pizza Dough,
Clams, Mozzarella, & Bacon

Let pizza dough rest in a lightly oiled bowl, covered with a
kitchen towel for 20 minutes-2 hours.

Bake bacon until crispy, 450 for about 15 minutes
Rendered bacon fat with crushed garlic.
Brush onto pizza dough, making sure to give each kid a turn.


Kid 1

Kid 2

Kid 3

Two cans of chopped clams, drained (a few TBSP of liquid reserved)
Evenly spread sliced mozzarella, clams and bacon over pizza

Sprinkle cooked pizza with arugula, lemon juice and garlic bacon oil, slice and enjoy!
We cut our pizza with kitchen shears


Pizza with Clams, Bacon & Arugula

Ingredients

1 pound refrigerated pizza dough
All-purpose flour, for kneading

9 slices bacon3 large cloves garlic, crushed
1 pound ball fresh mozzarella, sliced (about 10 slices)
2 6.5-ounce cans chopped clams, juice drained and few TBSP reserved

2 cups baby arugula
Juice of 1 lemon

Kosher salt

Directions

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. 

1. Place pizza dough into a bowl that has been lightly slicked with olive oil. Cover with a kitchen towel and let stand for at least 20 minutes, up to 1.5 hours.
2. Place bacon on a foil lined baking sheet. Place rack in the middle of the oven and bake bacon for 15-20 minutes.
3. Remove bacon onto paper towel lined plate and let cool. When cooled, crumble the bacon.
4. Pour rendered bacon fat into bowl and add crushed garlic.
5. Increase oven temperature to 500 degrees. Place baking rack in bottom 1/3 of the oven.
6. Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface. Roll and stretch into a large rectangle: the size of a large baking sheet.
7. Brush the entire crust with the garlic bacon oil (including the perimeter crust!!). This should use about 1/2 of your bacon oil. Reserve remainder.
8. Evenly place sliced mozzarella, clams and bacon over the dough.
9. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of clam juice over dough. Sprinkle with Kosher salt.
10. Bake  for 15 minutes, until the crust is light brown.
11. When the pizza comes out of the oven, top it with arugula (the arugula that touches the pizza will wilt a little, so put enough arugula to have both wilted and crunchy!) and drizzle with lemon juice and some of the reserved garlic bacon oil.  
Eat, Drink Be Yummy!

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