Zesty Mediterranean flavors, sweet minced clams, diced Spanish chorizo, and a simple lemony arugula salad atop a thin crust... The simplicity and freshness of Easy Clam and Chorizo Pizza with Arugula Salad makes it a perfect summer weeknight meal, whether you choose a pre-made pizza crust, commercially prepared dough, or make your own pizza dough in the bread machine...
Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen.
~~ John Steinbeck
My family (husband and 4 adult sons) and I have been making some version of this pizza for what seems like "forever." I am not sure where the idea for this pizza originated, but we're a food-crazed family that regularly handles interesting ideas. 😆 I am fairly confident in saying this is not an "Italian" style pizza.
Italian culinary doctrine – a constitution held up by Italian home matriarchs where infractions can be punishable by no supper or death – is very clear on the subject. Cheese and seafood shall not be mixed. Ever.
~~ Stephanie Stiavetti and Garrett McCord, Smithsonian.com
Are rules not meant to be broken? I do feel there are times when fish and seafood pair well with cheese. It's a matter of balance. This is a "white pie" (no tomato sauce), and the cheese is a condiment rather than a focus of the pie. Classic Italian flavors - olive oil, garlic, shallot, crushed red pepper, and Mediterranean oregano - are combined with just a bit of spicy Spanish chorizo, and of course, clams. Before a quick trip into a hot oven, the pizza gets a few thin slices of fresh mozzarella, and a sprinkling of grated parmesan. This atypical combination is beautifully complemented by the bright, peppery bite of a lightly dressed arugula salad that is added after baking.
Pour a glass of crisp white wine, fold that slice in half, and savor the flavors. I think you'll find it a most pleasant repast on a warm summer evening. We certainly enjoyed it last week while vacationing with our "kids" in the Texas Hill Country. It was our son Evan's night to cook, and this is his interpretation of clam pizza. Love at first bite!
I love to make my own pizza dough, and sometimes I make enough in my bread machine to have enough extra to freeze for another day. Trader Joe's and other fine markets have begun selling good quality pizza dough, and this is another great time-saving option. While on vacation, though, an extra-thin prepared crust is perfectly acceptable! Whether you do spend the extra time making your own dough, you roll out ready-to-roll dough, or you use a prepared crust, you will enjoy the end result...
If you love interesting and unusual pizzas you might want to take a look at my Mexican Grilled Pizza with Shrimp Ceviche and Avocado Hummus, Grilled Rocoto and Bison Pizza, Mexican Green Chile and Shrimp Pizza, and my Fresh Fig and Soppressata Pizza. Fresh figs are just becoming available at my local market, and I'm looking forward to making that one again. Do you have a favorite unusual pizza you make or love to enjoy out? I'd love to hear from you! Until next time...
Easy Clam Chorizo Pizza With Arugula Salad
- 1 14 " to 16" pizza crust see notes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 to 2 ounces Spanish chorizo 1/4" dice
- 1 shallot minced
- 1 teaspoon garlic minced
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 teaspoon Mediterranean oregano
- 1 can minced clams with juice
- 4 ounces fresh mozzarella sliced thin
- 1 ounce parmesan grated
- 4 cups arugula
- 1 lemon zest and juice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- sea salt/fresh ground pepper
Preheat oven to 475 degrees (450 convection).
Heat the olive oil in a small saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the diced chorizo, shallot, and garlic. Saute 1 to 2 minutes until very fragrant. Add the crushed red pepper and oregano, saute another 1 to 2 minutes. (Be careful to not burn!) Remove from the heat.
If using pizza dough, blind bake the crust until it is beginning to brown. If using a prepared crust, skip this step.
With crust on a pizza stone or sheet pan, spread the chorizo and clam mixture evenly over the pizza.
Top with a few thin slices of mozzarella and sprinkle with grated parmesan.
Place in hot oven. Bake 5 to 8 minutes until pizza edges are nice and brown and cheese is bubbly.
While the pizza bakes, whisk the lemon juice and zest with the olive oil, then toss with the arugula. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Remove the pizza from the oven, top with the arugula salad, and serve.
If you're starting this pizza with dough, you need to precook the crust.
The clams need only a few minutes, and if overcooked, they'll be tough.
This recipe requires hard Spanish chorizo (not to be confused with Mexican chorizo).