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The 1661 Inn and Hotel Manisses
Block Island, Rhode Island
Whole-Wheat Pizza with Pesto, Vegetables, and Goat Cheese
Make the pizza dough: In a bowl, proof the yeast with the sugar in 1/3 cup lukewarm water for 10 minutes or until it is foamy. In a food processor, process the yeast mixture with 1/3 cup lukewarm water, oil, whole-wheat flour, bran, 1-1/3 cups of flour, and salt until the mixture forms a ball, adding more water, 1 teaspoon at a time, if it is too dry or more of the remaining 1/3 cup of flour, 1 teaspoon at a time, if it is too wet.
Knead the dough by process it for 15 seconds. Put the dough in an oiled bowl and turn it to coast it with the oil. Let the dough rise, covered with plastic wrap, in a warm place for 1 hour or until it is double in bulk, and then punch it down.
Make the pesto: Mince and mash the garlic to a paste with the salt. In a food processor or blender, purée the basil with pine nuts, garlic paste, oil, and Parmesan and chill the pesto, covered.
Heat a well-seasoned large ridged grill pan over moderately high heat, brush it with the oil, and in it grill the eggplant in batches, covered, for 4 minutes on each side or until it is tender, transferring it to a platter as it is grilled.
Sprinkle 2 oiled black-steel baking sheets with the cornmeal. Divide the dough into fourths, roll out each fourth on a lightly floured surface into a 7-inch round, and fit the rounds onto the baking sheets. Spread 1/2 cup of pesto evenly on the rounds, reserving the remaining pesto for another use, and arrange the tomatoes, spinach, and the basil on top of the pesto. Arrange 5 slices of the eggplant and 5 slices of the goat cheese on each round.
Bake the pizzas, 1 baking sheet at a time, on the bottom shelf of a preheated 450-degree gas oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until the crust is golden brown. Transfer them with spatulas to a cutting board.
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