Makes two 15cm round pizzas:
8 baby red and gold beetroot (beets)
1 Tbs thyme leaves, plus 1 teaspoon extra
2 Tbs olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Semolina or plain (all-purpose) flour, for dusting
2 x 120g pizza dough balls (see pages 222–224)
60g goats' curd
60g buffalo mozzarella cheese, sliced
1/4 bunch of chives, cut into 5 cm (2 inch) lengths
1 Tbs olive oil
1 tsp good-quality red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp lemon juice
2 Tbs toasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
Preheat the oven to 180 C (350 C/Gas 4). Trim the beetroot stems, leaving 1cm intact. Wash the beetroot, place on a large sheet of foil in a baking dish, then sprinkle with the thyme, olive oil, sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Wrap the beetroot in the foil, and roast for 40 minutes or until tender. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before peeling off the skin and cutting them in slices or quarters.
Place a pizza stone in the oven and pre-heat the oven to 250 C (500 F/Gas 9) or its highest temperature. Once it has reached the temperature, it will take about 15 minutes for the pizza stone to heat up.
Meanwhile, lightly dust a clean work surface with semolina or flour, then roll out each dough ball into a 15cm round that is about 3mm thick. Transfer the pizza bases onto pieces of baking paper; this is necessary for transferring the assembled pizza to the heated pizza stone. Prick the pizza basesall over with a fork or docker.
Spread the goats' curd on the bases of the pizzas and top with the extra thyme, buffalo mozzarella slices, beetroot and sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Transfer the pizzas onto the heated pizza stone.
Cook the pizzas in the oven for 5–10 minutes or until golden and crisp.
Using a pizza paddle or wide spatula, carefully transfer the pizzas to a chopping board or plate.
Meanwhile, to make the dressing, combine the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice and half the hazelnuts in a bowl and mix together. Season with sea salt and drizzle the dressing over the pizzas, then top with remaining the hazelnuts and the chivesand serve.
"This is the type of pizza I love to teach people to cook at home. It has just a few top quality ingredients that, when treated with love, work sublimely together. When the baby beetroot are at the peak of their season, simply roast them in the oven in some foil until tender, remove the skins (it’s best to do this wearing gloves so you don’t get stained fingers) and then either slice or quarter them. Add some lovely fresh goat’s curd and a beautiful hazelnut dressing - it’s a pretty near unbeatable combination."
Credits: 'Pizza' by Pete Evans