Grilled Flatbread with Local Burrata Cheese, Heirloom Tomatoes, and Arugula Pesto

Grilled Flatbread with Local Burrata Cheese, Heirloom Tomatoes, and Arugula Pesto
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About This Recipe

Hello, beloved Napa Valley culinary aficionados! Lily here, your local food guide, inviting you on a gastronomic journey. Today, we're channeling the sun-soaked vibes of Napa with a dish that’s not only close to my heart but also encapsulates the essence of our region: the Grilled Flatbread Pizza adorned with Local Burrata Cheese, Heirloom Tomatoes, and an exquisite Arugula Pesto recipe.

If you've ever savored a pesto grilled cheese sandwich at one of our local bistros, you know the magic of pesto. But our arugula pesto recipe? It’s a game-changer. With its peppery undertones, arugula adds a zest that traditional basil sometimes misses. Combine this with the creaminess of burrata, and it's like a tomato burrata salad but on a warm, crispy flatbread. It’s this play on textures and flavors that make this dish a quintessential Napa favorite.

Inspiration struck one sunlit morning at the Napa Farmers' Market. The stalls were a riot of colors, scents, and sounds, with farmers passionately discussing the merits of their produce. Enveloped in this sensory experience, the vision for this dish began to form: a burrata pizza recipe that would be both rustic and gourmet, highlighting the symphony of flavors our beautiful valley offers.

Thinking of what to serve alongside your flatbread? A sprightly cucumber and red onion salad, with its crunch and tang, offers a delightful contrast. And when the evening air turns cooler, and the stars begin their dance, what better way to round off your meal than with the aromatic allure of lavender honey ice cream? Local creameries, including Three Twins, offer versions that are nothing short of ambrosial.

Sourcing the Soul of the Dish

The key to this dish's enchantment lies in its ingredients. Fresh burrata cheese, with its soft texture and milky core, can be sourced from artisanal dairies in the valley. The heirloom tomatoes, each variety bursting with its unique flavor, and the bold arugula, essential for our pesto sauce, beckon from local farm stands.

The Perfect Setting

To truly savor the grilled flatbread pizza, imagine this: a table outdoors, soft breezes ruffling through, and panoramic views of Napa's emblematic vineyards stretching out before you. Enhance this idyllic scene with a glass of vibrant Sauvignon Blanc or a rounded Chardonnay from stalwarts like Stag's Leap or Frog's Leap.

As you embark on creating this culinary masterpiece, remember: it's not just about the food. It’s about embracing Napa's spirit. It's about the stories shared over meals, the laughter that echoes, and the memories forged. In Napa, every meal is a celebration, and today, with this dish, we’re celebrating the best of us. Cheers!

Hero Ingredient Spotlight: Local Burrata Cheese

Burrata cheese, with its luxuriously creamy center wrapped in a delicate mozzarella shell, is the heart of our Grilled Flatbread recipe. Originating from Italy's Puglia region, burrata is a testament to the art of cheesemaking. Using local burrata not only supports our Napa Valley farmers but also guarantees an unparalleled freshness. When sliced open, the lush, buttery interior spills out, creating a texture and flavor that's hard to resist. Paired with heirloom tomatoes and arugula pesto, the cheese's richness shines, making it the undisputed star of the dish.

How To: Grill the Perfect Flatbread

Grilling flatbread might seem intimidating, but with a few simple steps, you can achieve that crispy, charred perfection every time.

  1. Preheat your grill: Ensure your grill is at medium-high heat. This ensures even cooking without burning the dough.
  2. Lightly oil the grates: This prevents sticking and lends a subtle smokiness to the flatbread.
  3. Roll evenly: A consistent thickness ensures uniform cooking.
  4. Monitor closely: Flatbread cooks quickly! Keep an eye out for those characteristic golden-brown grill marks and ensure it doesn't burn.
  5. Flip with finesse: Use a wide spatula or tongs to gently turn the flatbread, ensuring the toppings stay in place.

FAQs

  1. Can I use another type of cheese instead of burrata?
    Absolutely! Fresh mozzarella or ricotta would work well. However, burrata's creamy center offers a unique texture and flavor profile.
  2. I have a nut allergy. Can I make the arugula pesto without pine nuts?
    Yes, you can omit the pine nuts or substitute with seeds like sunflower or pumpkin for a similar texture.
  3. How should I store leftover grilled flatbread?
    Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two days. Reheat in an oven or toaster oven for best results.
  4. Can I use store-bought pesto?
    While homemade arugula pesto brings a fresh and distinct flavor to the flatbread, store-bought varieties can be used if you're short on time.
  5. Is there a gluten-free alternative to the pizza dough?
    Yes, many stores offer gluten-free pizza dough options. You can also make your own using a gluten-free flour blend.

Tips for Success

  1. Use Room Temperature Dough: Allowing the store-bought pizza dough to sit at room temperature makes it easier to roll out and shape.
  2. Prep Toppings in Advance: Have all your toppings ready before you start grilling. The grilling process is quick, and you don't want to be scrambling for ingredients.
  3. Pair with the Perfect Wine: The suggested Napa Valley Rosé enhances the flavors of the dish. However, other options like Sauvignon Blanc or a balanced Chardonnay can also complement the flavors beautifully.

Grilled Flatbread with Local Burrata, Heirloom Tomatoes, and Arugula Pesto is more than just a recipe; it's a journey through the rich flavors and produce of the Napa Valley. Enjoy the culinary adventure!

Recipe Overview

Recipe:
Grilled Flatbread with Local Burrata Cheese, Heirloom Tomatoes, and Arugula Pesto
Author:
Lily Anderson
Season:
Summer
Yield:
4 servings
Calories Per Serving:
796
Prep Time:
PT20M
Cook Time:
PT10M
Total Time:
PT30M

Ingredients List

For the arugula pesto:

  • 2 cups arugula, packed
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

For the grilled flatbread:

  • 1 pound store-bought pizza dough, at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 8 ounces local burrata cheese, torn into small pieces
  • 2 cups heirloom tomatoes, sliced or chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Fresh basil leaves, for garnish (optional)

Step-by-Step Directions

  1. Begin by making the arugula pesto. In a food processor, combine the arugula, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts, and garlic. Pulse until coarsely chopped. While the processor is running, slowly add the olive oil in a steady stream. Continue processing until the pesto is smooth. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Set aside.
  2. Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. Lightly oil the grates to prevent sticking.
  3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pizza dough to your desired thickness. Brush one side of the dough with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
  4. Carefully place the dough, oiled side down, on the preheated grill. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the bottom is golden brown and grill marks appear. Brush the top side of the dough with the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and flip the dough using a spatula.
  5. Once flipped, spread a generous layer of arugula pesto over the grilled side of the dough. Top with pieces of burrata cheese and sliced heirloom tomatoes. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  6. Close the grill lid and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, or until the bottom is golden brown and the cheese is slightly melted.
  7. Carefully remove the flatbread from the grill, and garnish with fresh basil leaves, if desired. Slice into pieces and serve immediately with a glass of Napa Valley Rosé. The fruity and refreshing notes of the wine perfectly complement the creamy burrata cheese, juicy heirloom tomatoes, and bright arugula pesto, creating a harmonious and delicious dining experience that showcases the best of our region's farm-to-table offerings.

Share Your Results

Was it everything you dreamed it could be? Let me know how it turned out for you and share a picture on social media with the hashtag #LilyCooksNapa

Hello and welcome to Napa Home Chef! We're thrilled you're joining us to explore the vibrant world of wine country cooking. Our team has crafted bold, creative recipes inspired by Napa Valley's lush landscapes, bountiful harvests, and world-renowned wines. We hope you enjoy the journey with us!

Get ready to experience the rich flavors and unique culinary delights that embody the essence of wine country living. Happy cooking!

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