Pizza is on the menu today! A few days ago, I was cleaning out my refrigerator and noticed that I had a few smoked herring fillets leftovers from a package I had bought two weeks ago. I did not want to leave them in the refrigerator because as we all know the smell can be overwhelming when not wrapped properly and stored in the fridge.
I decided to make pizza since I was in the mood for it anyway. So I made Smoke Herring Pizza. Cooking herring fillets can be very tricky. The fillets must be desalted under running water then boiled in a mixture of vinegar and water to remove most of the salt and to cut down on the fishy smell. I have been doing it this way for a long time, and it works for me. You may want to try this technique as well.
The Pizza Dough
Whenever I make pizza from scratch, I love using bread flour because of texture and taste. I often make a no yeast dough recipe when I am in a hurry and don’t have time to wait for the dough to rise. It is not the best recipe because it almost tastes like you are eating regular bread.
The pizza dough does not have the same elasticity when it is made with yeast. The method I am using this recipe from www.easypizzacrusts.com, and it is called “No Yeast Pizza Crust Recipe.” It is best to use a good All-Purpose Flour brand when making this pizza recipe dough.
The pizza dough is prepared with flour, baking powder, salt, water, and cooking oil. The water measurement from the recipe is not exact because I always use a few more teaspoons of water. For cooking oil, I used regular olive oil.
The Smoked Herrings
After boiling the smoked herring, the fillets were shredded and pan-fried with spices and mixed with marinara sauce. The recipe overall took some time to make because I wanted to figure out the pros and cons. For example, using a nonstick skillet instead of a regular skillet helped a lot when cooking the shredded herrings.
Using a small amount of oil paid off because the herring mixture was not greasy. I know many chefs say more oil is better when cooking certain dishes, but this is an exception. I used shallots because I wanted the flavors to balance.
The tricky part of the pizza was the mozzarella cheese. I struggled with this but do not regret the decision. I know I wasn’t making cheesy bread because of the texture of the pizza dough, so I avoided adding lots of cheese. It paid off!
Everyone who had a chance to taste the Smoked Herring Pizza loved it. No one complained about the cheese. I guess using less was the key to making this pizza successfully the first time. But one thing I will say, adding my Original Gourmet Hot Sauce was a good decision. In general, a hot pepper sauce adds tons of flavor to smoked herrings. My sister Erika added avocado slices on her pizza slice and said it was delicious. I tried it too and loved it.
My Smoked Herring Pizza was light, crispy and salt content was perfectly balanced.
- Smoked Herrings Preparation:
- 0.8 lb smoked herring fillets
- 6 cups water
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped - 1 teaspoon
- ½ cup shallots chopped
- 1 tablespoon parsley finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice or lime, fresh
- 6 tablespoons marinara sauce
- ¼ teaspoon [original gourmet hot sauce/https://www.caribbeangreenliving.com/product-category/gourmet-hot-sauces/]
- Pizza Dough Preparation:
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup water
- 1 tablespoon cooking oil or olive oil
- Smoked Herrings Pizza Recipe:
- ¼ cup mozzarella cheese shredded
- Rinse herring fillets under running water to remove excess salt. In a large saucepan add fillets, water and vinegar and bring to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes, remove from water, let cool and shred.
- On low to medium high heat, in a nonstick skillet, add oil, garlic, parsley, shallots, black pepper and pepper flakes if using. Fry mixture for 3 - 4 minutes. Remove from skillet and set aside on a plate. Make sure you do not remove most of the oil from the skillet.
- In same skillet, add shredded fillets and fry for 5 minutes stirring occasionally while breaking the larger pieces. The mixture should be darker in color and look crispier. Add Shallots mixture, lemon/lime juice, hot sauce, 1 tablespoon marinara sauce and cook together for another 2 -3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to cool while preparing pizza dough.
- Preheat oven to 200°C / 400°F / Gas Mark 6. Prepare a 31cm (12") pizza pan by spraying with non-stick cooking spray. Combine all dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Mix water with oil and add to dry ingredients and incorporate well. More water may be needed - add 1 teaspoon of water at intervals. Knead dough by hand 6-8 times on a lightly floured surface. Roll dough thinly. Place rolled dough onto prepared pizza pan. (Original No Yeast Pizza Crust Recipe can be found at www.easypizzacrust.com)
- Spread the remaining marinara sauce on the prepared dough, add herring mixture and cheese. Bake pizza at 200°C / 400°F / Gas Mark 6 for 18-20 minutes, depending on the crust thickness. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes before serving.