Salami and Arugula Pizza

makes two 12- to 14-inch pizzas

4 ounces Italian salami, sliced into 1/4-inch matchsticks

2 (13-ounce) balls of pizza dough

1 cup pizza sauce

6 ounces fresh mozzarella (fior di latte), shredded

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

8 large basil leaves, chiffonade

Handful of baby arugula

Unbleached all-purpose flour and/or cornmeal for dusting

Extra-Virgin olive oil for brushing

Crushed red pepper flakes to taste (optional)

Place a baking stone on the middle shelf of your oven (unless you know your oven well enough to place it on a different shelf) and preheat on the highest setting (about 575º F) for at least an hour.

While the oven is heating, cook the salami strips in a dry non-stick skillet over medium high heat until they just begin to crisp, about 3-5 minutes.  Transfer the meat to a paper towel to drain the fat; set aside.

Making one pizza at a time on a lightly floured surface, shape the ball into a 12- to 14-inch pizza, about 1/4-inch thick and slightly thicker towards the edge.  Transfer the dough to a pizza peel or inverted baking sheet that has been lightly dusted with flour or cornmeal.

Brush the outer edge of the dough with Extra-Virgin olive oil.  Spread 1/2 cup of the pizza sauce over the dough.  Arrange half of the mozzarella and half of the drained salami over the top of the sauce and sprinkle with half of the Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

Carefully slide the pizza from the peel onto the baking stone.  Bake until the crust is puffy and slightly charred on the edge, about 7-9 minutes.

Remove the pizza from the oven and immediately sprinkle with the basil and arugula. Sprinkle with crushed red pepper flakes if using. Slice and serve.  Repeat with the remaining ingredients for the second pizza.  Enjoy! 

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