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California Pizza Kitchen Southwestern Burrito Pizza

By Todd Wilbur


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Menu Description: "With grilled chicken breast marinated in lime and herbs, Southwestern black beans, fire-roasted mild chilis, sweet white onions and Cheddar cheese. Served with green tomatillo salsa and sour cream."

California Pizza Kitchen uses imported Italian wood-fired ovens to bake the specialty pizzas. These ovens reach temperatures over 800 degrees F, allowing the pizzas to cook in just three minutes. This technique keeps ingredients from drying out so that the pizzas don't require as much cheese as in traditional recipes.

Unfortunately, most of us don't have wood-burning pizza ovens in our kitchens so I have designed these recipes to work in a conventional oven with a minimum of cheese. If you have a pizza stone, use it. If you have a hard time finding tomatillos (they look like small green tomatoes with a thin papery skin and are found in the produce section) you can use canned green salsa. 

You have the option of using a store-bought crust or instant pizza dough, but I can't say enough about making the dough yourself from the recipe here. You just have to plan ahead, making the dough one day before you plan to bake the pizza. This way the dough will get to rest and will rise slowly in the refrigerator—a great technique the pros use.

Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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The Crust
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon warm water (105 degrees to 115 degrees F)
  • 3/4 teaspoon yeast
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 cup bread flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 10-inch par-baked crust (like Boboli),
  • or
  • pre-made pizza dough or dough mix
Marinated Chicken
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 skinless chicken breast
  • 3/4 cup canned refried black beans
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup sliced white onion
  • 1 whole can mild green chili
  • 1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
Tomatillo Salsa (Optional)
  • 3/4 cup chopped tomatillos (about 4)
  • 3 whole canned mild green chilis (4-ounce can)
  • 1/4 fresh jalapeno
  • 2 tablespoons chopped onion
  • Pinch salt
On the Side
  • Sour cream
  • Do This
    • Restaurant/Brand
      California Pizza Kitchen
    • Instructions

      1. If you are making a homemade crust, start the dough one day before you plan to serve the pizza. In a small bowl or measuring cup dissolve the yeast and sugar in the warm water. Let it sit for 5 minutes until the surface of the mixture turns foamy. Sift together the flour and salt in a medium bowl. Make a depression in the flour and pour in the olive oil and yeast mixture. Use a fork to stir the liquid, gradually drawing in more flour as you stir, until all the ingredients are combined. When you can no longer stir with a fork, use your hands to form the dough into a ball. Knead the dough with the heels of your hands on a lightly floured surface for 10 minutes, or until the texture of the dough is smooth. Form the dough back into a ball, coat it lightly with oil, and place it into a clean bowl covered with plastic wrap. Keep the bowl in a warm place for about 2 hours to allow the dough to double in size. Punch down the dough and put it back into the covered bowl and into your refrigerator overnight. Take the dough from the refrigerator 2 to 3 hours before you plan to build the pizza so that the dough can warm up to room temperature.

      2. Make the marinade by combining the lime juice, 1 tablespoon olive oil, soy sauce, garlic, cilantro, salt, and pepper flakes in a blender or in a small bowl with an electric mixer for only 5 seconds or so, just until the ingredients are well combined.

      3. Cut the chicken into bite-size cubes, then marinate the chicken breast in the lime mixture for at least 2 hours.

      4. When the chicken has marinated, heat up a small skillet with the remaining 1 teaspoon of olive oil over high heat. Cook the chicken in the pan for 2 to 4 minutes or until it is cooked through.

      5. Mix the black beans with the water and cayenne pepper.

      6. Form the dough into a ball and roll out on a floured surface until very thin and 10 inches in diameter. Put your pizza on a baking sheet or pizza pan. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F.

      7. Spread the black bean mixture evenly over the crust.

      8. Now arrange the chicken evenly over the black beans.

      9. Spread the onions over the chicken.

      10. Take the chili pepper and carefully slice it in half, crossways. Then slice the two halves into very thin strips. Sprinkle the chili over the onions.

      11. Spread the Monterey Jack over the pizza.

      12. Top it off with the Cheddar.

      13. Cook the pizza for 12 to 15 minutes or until the crust begins to turn brown.

      14. While the pizza cooks, combine all the ingredients for the tomatillo salsa in a food processor or blender. Run on low speed for about 15 seconds.

      15. When the pizza is done, remove it from the oven and immediately make 4 even cuts through the middle, creating 8 slices of pizza. Serve with tomatillo sauce and sour cream on the side.

      Serves 2.

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