Green Chile Chicken Pizza

In addition to garlic chicken pizza and pepperoni pizza last night, we had a green chile chicken pizza. Here’s how:

Green Chile Chicken Pizza

Crust:

Make a sponge first.

Stir together:

  • 2 c. of warm water
  • 2 T. sugar
  • 2 T. oil
  • 2 T. yeast (remember that 1 packet of yeast = 1 Tablespoon)
  • 2 t. salt
  • 1 t. garlic powder
  • 2 c. bread flour

Let this sponge sit for about 20 minutes.

After the sponge is good and bubbly, mix approx. 3 more cups of bread flour. Continue adding flour until until the dough is roughly the texture of your earlobe and pulls away from the side of the bowl as it mixes or kneads. You will need 5-6 cups of flour TOTAL, which includes the two cups already in the sponge; how much flour varies depending on the relative humidity of your kitchen. (Always use a Kitchenaid mixer if you have one.) If you’re kneading by hand, knead for approx. 8 minutes. If you’re kneading in a mixer with a dough hook, knead for about 4 minutes and be careful not to over-knead.

While the dough is rising, saute’ 3 chicken breasts. Remove those from the pan and dice up into 1/2 inch cubes and set aside.

Sauce:

First, grill 4 anaheim peppers and 4 jalapeno peppers until dark brown and completely cooked. Remove stems. If you like sauce with a kick, leave the seeds and pith in the peppers. If you want a milder sauce, remove the seeds and possibly substitute more anaheim peppers for a few of the jalapenos.

In a food processor, whirl together the

  • 4 grilled anaheim peppers
  • 4 grilled jalapeno peppers
  • 1/3 c. lime juice
  • 1/2 washed bunch of cilantro
  • 1/2 c. ranch dressing
  • 1/4 t. salt

Chop 3-4 roma tomatoes very finely. (It’s important to use romas because other tomatoes have too much water in them and will make the pizza soggy.)

Chop the remaining 1/2 bunch of cilantro.

Now it’s time to assemble the pizzas.

Divide the dough in half and spread, stretch, spin, pull the dough out to covere two 16″ pizza stones or 3 smaller pans. (Be sure to spray Pam nonstick spray on the pans or stones.)

Spread 1/2 of the chile/ranch sauce onto each unbaked crust. Evenly distribute 1/2 of the chicken and 1/2 of the cilantro onto each pizza. Layer cheese over both. Last, sprinkle 1/2 of the chopped tomatoes on the top of the pizzas.

Bake at 400 degrees for 18-20 minutes. Switch the top pizza to the bottom and the bottom pizza to the top about halfway through baking. (Oh, by the way, did I mention that you should be preheating the oven?)

Pizza is done when the cheese is melted and bubbly, the edges are golden brown, and the bottom is slightly crisp. If the bottom is still soggy, let it bake a little longer.

This pizza can be pretty spicy, but you can control HOW spicy with which and how many peppers use use in the sauce. Anaheim peppers are great and Poblano peppers also work deliciously. In a pinch, yellow peppers will work. The very hottest option is to use habanero peppers. THOSE pack a real punch. Jalapenos definitely add heat as well. Play around with the different peppers to find the flavor you like best.

If you want to keep this pizza vegetarian, you can leave off the chicken and you’ll still have a really delicious and unique homemade pizza.

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