Warm summer days have a slow rhythm. They can't be hurried, and it's best to let them have their way. Summer also cries out for lighter entrees and frosty desserts. I love cobblers, but a dessert pizza was made for hot, lazy evenings. I imagine dinner on the porch, barbecued chicken and slaw, and the pizza. A fizzy peach cooler would be a nice compliment, but anything with ice and fruit would hit the spot. We don't need to turn on the radio. The night provides its own music. Crickets, bullfrogs, the far off hoot of a barn owl. Down on the lawn, lightning bugs appear, floating in lazy patterns.
I'd never made a fruit pizza, and I'm not sure why I waited so long. The mint is a cooling herb, and it carries the essence of summer. Berries add a spell of their own, making you think of brambles and sunlit meadows, reaching into a bush and picking berries until your fingers are stained and your belly is full. And peaches are the fruit of the month, abundant in July, adding enchantment to every dish.
I don't have to tell you about the versatility of this pizza. Can't you just imagine it with cherries, grapes, pineapple, apples, pears? A pizza like this could take us into Autumn with a slight shift in ingredients, couldn't it?
Grilled Dessert Pizza
Adapted from a recipe in Southern Lady Magazine (May/June 2016 issue)
1 can refrigerated pizza dough (dairy case)
8 oz. container mascarpone
2 teaspoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed orange juice
2 peaches, sliced
2 nectarines, sliced
blackberries and raspberries
Spray a jelly roll pan with Pam. Place pizza dough onto the pan and gently shape and flatten the dough with your fingers. Place pan on a hot charcoal grill. [You can find my directions (and saga) HERE. But the pizza would be just as delicious if you baked it in the oven.]
Remove crust from grill and cool.
In a bowl, mix mascarpone and sugar. Whisk in orange juice. Spread cheese mixture onto the crust. Arrange fruit on top of the cheese. Garnish with mint. Drizzle honey over the fruit and cheese.
Yield: 1 pizza (serves 4 to 6)
The original recipe called for cream cheese and crème fraîche, but I mascarpone. My eldest son is a chef, and he advised me to add powdered sugar (granulated won't work well) to the mascarpone. I'm sure the pizza would be delightful with cream cheese and crème fraîche, but I couldn't find the latter ingredient at the grocery.