Maple Roasted Apple, Bacon and Pecan Flatbread
Makes 1 (14-by-12-inch) flatbread. Serves 6.
Note: Sweet and savory, this flatbread is bursting with Minnesota fall flavor. While a homemade crust is ultra-easy, if time is short, you can substitute purchased pizza dough. Crumbled blue cheese (3/4 cup) can be substituted for the Gruyère. From Meredith Deeds.
• 1/4 c. maple syrup
• 1 tbsp. brown sugar
• 1 tbsp. melted butter
• 1/4 tsp. salt
• 2 medium Granny Smith or Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1/2-in. slices
• 1 medium red onion, cut into 1/4-in. slices
• 6 slices thick-cut bacon, chopped
• 1/2 c. buttermilk
• 4 oz. cream cheese, softened
• 1/3 c. grated Parmesan cheese
• 2 tbsp. olive oil
• Flatbread crust (see recipe) or 1 lb. pizza dough
• 1 1/2 c. shredded Gruyère cheese (see Note)
• 1/2 c. chopped pecans
About 30 minutes before making the flatbread, preheat the oven, with a pizza stone, if possible, on the lowest rack, to 450 degrees.
Spray a large, rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, combine the maple syrup, brown sugar, melted butter and salt. Add the apples and red onion and toss to coat.
Arrange the apples and onion mixture and bacon on the baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, until apples are just tender and beginning to brown.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, cream cheese and Parmesan cheese.
Coat the bottom of an 18-by-13-inch rimmed baking sheet with the oil. Turn dough out onto a floured work surface and roll to a 14-by-12-inch rectangle. Place on prepared baking sheet.
Spread the cream cheese mixture over the crust, leaving a 1-inch border around the edge. Sprinkle the Gruyère cheese over the top. Arrange the roasted apples, onions and bacon over the top. Place the pan directly on the pizza stone, if using, or on the lowest oven rack and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven, sprinkle the pecans over the top and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes until browned.
Makes 1 (14-by-12-inch) flatbread crust.
Note: From Meredith Deeds
• 2 c. flour
• 1 pkg. (2 1/4 tsp.) dry instant yeast
• 1 tsp. sugar
• 1 tsp. salt
• 3/4 c., plus 2 tbsp. water, lukewarm (not over 115 degrees)
• 1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
• Cornmeal for dusting
To prepare the crust: In a large bowl, combine the flour, yeast, sugar and salt. Create a well in the center of the dry mixture.
Pour lukewarm water and olive oil into the well. Stir the mixture until the dough comes together. Knead for 4 to 5 minutes, until smooth and elastic. Dough may be sticky and you may need to sprinkle a little more flour on it as you knead, but don’t add too much. The dough should be soft.
Form dough into a ball, place in an oiled bowl and cover with a clean towel or plastic wrap. Let rise for an hour at room temperature or refrigerate overnight and let stand at room temperature for 1 hour before shaping. (Alternately, combine all the crust ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and pulse several times until the dough comes together in a ball. It’s not necessary to knead by hand. Let rise in the closed food processor bowl for 1 hour.)