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BBQ Chicken Pretzel Crust Pizza

This pretzel-pizza hybrid is the collab you didn’t know you needed. Thanks to the genius of Ooni ambassador Josh Tahan, you can enjoy the best of both worlds – a salty, pretzel crust surrounds a pizza base topped with gooey beer cheese and fiery BBQ chicken. If you’d rather use plain cheddar, it’s just as good. This pizza is knot to be missed!

Equipment
11” circular pizza pan

Ingredients
Makes 4 medium pretzel pizzas

For the dough:
219g (7.7oz) 00 flour
0.2g active dried yeast
9g (2 tsp) salt
180g (6.3 oz) warm water
Olive oil for greasing the pan

For the beer cheese:
30g (2 tbsp) butter
30g (2 tbsp) all purpose flour
140g (5oz) beer 
85g (3oz) heavy cream 
10g (2 tsp) dijon mustard
280g (10oz) shredded or cubed sharp cheddar cheese

For the toppings:
6-8 thin slices of pre-cooked chicken breast (per pizza)
2-3 tbsp BBQ sauce
Kosher salt, to taste

For the alkaline solution:
8g (½ tbsp) baking soda
141g (5oz) warm water


Method
You’ll need to start this recipe in advance, beginning at least 8 hours before you want to cook the pretzel pizza. 

In the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, mix together the warm water and yeast. Let rest for 5 minutes. Attach the dough hook and add the flour and salt. Mix on a low speed until fully combined, and continue mixing for 5-10 minutes, until the dough has become firm and stretchy. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave to rise in a warm place for 6-8 hours, or until doubled in size. 

When the dough is doubled in size, divide into 4 equal pieces. Shape and place each ball into a separate bowl/tray. Cover, and leave to rise for another 20-40 minutes, or until doubled in size. You can freeze any leftover dough to use at a later date. 

Next, prepare your beer cheese. You’ll need to start this at least two hours before you’re ready to cook. If you’d prefer to use plain cheddar on top of your pizza instead of making beer cheese, you can skip this step.

Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium, and add the flour. Stir constantly for 2 minutes. Add the heavy cream, beer, mustard, and mix well. Add the cheese little by little as you continue to stir. Once all the cheese is melted and your sauce is smooth, pour the mixture into a shallow bowl and leave to set in the fridge.

Once your dough and cheese are ready, fire up your Ooni pizza oven. Aim for 218°C (425°F) on the stone baking board inside. You can check the temperature of your oven quickly and easily using the Ooni Infrared Thermometer. 

Next, prepare your alkaline solution. Stir the baking soda into the warm water and place to one side.

With your fingers, lightly grease your pizza pan with olive oil. Stretch your dough and place in the pan – if the stretched dough is slightly larger than the pan, fold the edges over the pan to make a thicker crust around the exterior, pinching the excess down. 

Using a large spoon or ladle, spread a thin layer of BBQ sauce on the base. Top with chicken and a few dollops of cold beer cheese. Try to avoid overloading your pizza with sauce or cheese, less is more!

Generously brush the alkaline solution around the exterior of the crust, this will give the pizza it’s pretzel quality! Finish with a sprinkle of kosher salt around the exterior of your crust, to taste.

Place the pan at the front of the oven and bake for 4-5 minutes, making sure to turn the pizza regularly for an even cook. Once the crust is a deep golden brown, remove from the oven. 

Slide the pizza out the pan onto a clean cutting board, slice and enjoy while hot!

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