Riffs on Friday Night Flatbread

Fig, Brussels Sprouts and Walnut Flatbread with Balsamic Drizzle and Palotai Dolcetto
Most Friday nights you'll find us cuddled up over a creatively concocted pizza while catching up with Jim Lehrer and Gwen Ifill on PBS. This is our adult carry over from the years of Friday pizza-and-movie nights we separately had had with our young kids. Our current pizza nights bind us as we build our new life together while remembering fondly those parts of our pasts. The routine is comforting, the pizzas are always original and interesting, and it's a nice cushion between the work week and the weekend.

Our most recent pizza was a riff on Robin's flatbread with sauteed Brussels sprouts over at Vegetable Matter's. I used her flatbread dough recipe but added a spoonful of our friend Mary's sourdough starter. Yum. It was a great dough to work with and had magnificent flavor and texture.

I added about 1/3 cup diced pancetta and a sliced shallot to the browned butter, threw in about a dozen sliced dried figs, and doubled the walnuts which I had first toasted. As the flatbread baked, I reduced some balsamic vinegar which was drizzled over the warm pizza to finish.

The flatbread is delicious with Palotai's 2007 Dolcetto of southern Oregon's Umpqua Valley. I've written about Palotai Vineyard and Winery before, and their European styled wines continue to impress as we find ways to serve them. Here, the soft tannins get along nicely with the green vegetables, usually tough to match, and the jammy cherry notes work in harmony with the walnut and fig.

Cozy up! Tonight is Friday pizza night!


  1. Great recipe -- love the changes you made. I'm a vegetarian, but I think David will be over soon for your version! Best, Robin

  2. Thanks, Robin, for your lovely note. And thank you once again for providing the launch-pad of inspiration!

    Ladies and gentlemen, please do visit Robin at Vegetable Matter. There's lots more wonderful ideas to check out there!

  3. This sounds wonderful. I bet the brussel sprouts get a roasted flavor. Must go great with the walnuts and sweet figs!

  4. You are an incredible chef, an amazing writer, and a wonderful friend! You also have an uncanny ability to find recipes for produced foods/meals (thinking of your homemade Yumm Bowls) which eludes me. Can you help me find a recipe for anything resembling Toby's Tofu Spread, since I am currently scared to eat any seafood and do not care to return to eating mammals. Toby's, by the way, is based in your very own County!
    Namaste and thanks, Alli


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