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Pizza Knots


On football Sundays, there is nothing I want more than take out. I crave eggrolls, wings, pizza, crab rangoon, fries, burgers, ribs; something that screams “cheat food!” (And in all honesty, my joy for football Sundays is solely due to the food; I don’t really watch the games).

But armed with the excuse that football provides, I thought about what treat I have been craving the most lately, and what I had on hand in the kitchen to make it happen. I saw some left over marinara sauce, and decided that I wanted the garlicky, bready, buttery deliciousness known as garlic knots.

When I lived in Boston while going to college, my school was a stone’s throw away from several wonderful pizzerias. But the place to get garlic knots was at Crazy Dough’s Pizza on Boylston. This recipe takes me back to late nights with friends, exhausted after long rehearsals.

When making these, I decided to up the wow factor of a garlic knot by stuffing them with cheese and pepperoni. I must declare my experiment a success; even if I can’t possibly choose which variety I like the most. In addition to marinara sauce, I recommend trying out dipping these treats in my parmesan garlic butter sauce, because “too much of a good thing can be wonderful.”

Enjoy!




For the Dough (Recipe Credit: Laura Vitale)
Ingredients:
3 ½ cups of all purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
1 1/3 cups of warm water, about 110 degrees
1 envelope of yeast

Standing Mixer method:

Add the sugar to the warm water to a bowl and mix. Add the yeast and set it aside until it has activated. You want to see bubbles and foam.

In the bowl of a standing mixer, fitted with a dough hook, mix together the flour, salt, and olive oil. Add in your activated yeast mixture.With the speed on medium, mix until everything is combined. Once everything is combined, reduce the speed to low and mix for 10 minutes.

Oil a bowl with olive oil and set aside. For the dough into a ball and place i in the oiled bowl, coating all of the dough with oil to avoid the formation of a crust. Place a piece of plastic wrap on top of each bowl and place the dough into a warm place. Let rise for about 2 hours or until doubled in size.

Bread Machine method:

Add the sugar to the warm water to a bowl and mix. Add the yeast and set it aside until it has activated. You want to see bubbles and foam. Bowl this into the bowl of your bread mixer.

Add your oil, to the yeast mixture, then add your flour and salt. Select the dough function on your bread maker. Walk away until you hear the ding.



For the knots:

Ingredients:
Pizza dough from recipe above
8 cloves of garlic
4 tablespoons of fresh parsley
1 teaspoon of Italian seasoning
3/4 teaspoon of garlic powder
Pepperoni slices
4 oz of dried mozzarella, cut into 1/4 inch cubes
1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons melted butter
Salt and pepper to taste


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Roll the ball of dough on a floured surface  to about a quarter inch thickness. Cut in into one inch by four inch strips. For plain garlic knots, form the knots place them on the parchment lined baking sheet. For cheesy knots, tie the knots around a piece of mozzarella cheese. For pizza knots, tie the knots around a pepperoni covered piece of mozzarella cheese.

Bake for 20 minutes or until lightly golden brown.

While they bake, make the oil.

In a small food processor, add the garlic, oil, melted butter, garlic powder, Italian seasonings and parsley, blending until smooth.

Add the knots, fresh and hot out of the oven, to a large bowl and pour over the garlic oil, season with a little salt and pepper and toss together until they are well coated in the garlic oil.



Parmesan Butter sauce

1/4 cup Olive oil
1/4 cup melted butter
1/4 parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
salt and pepper, to taste
2 to 3 cloves of garlic, minced

In a cold pan, add the olive oil and garlic. Cook on low heat until fragrant and the garlic has just begun to turn slightly golden. Remove from heat and add all the other ingredients.





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