Sweet and Spicy Cranberry Jalapeno Pizza
While it sounds bizarre, this recipe is a delicious combination of flavors all over the spectrum that will delight your family, even if they’re confused at first. The tart, yet sweet acids of cranberries make a natural pair with umato flavors in bacon and the signature heat of the jalapeno. If this unique match has piqued your interest, read on to find out more about how these two seemingly incompatible ingredients play with each other and get an easy-to-follow wood-fired recipe you can make yourself!
Heat goes sweet
Why is it that sweet and spicy foods pair together well? One Green Planet offers a convincing explanation: When the two different flavors are combined, the sweet flavor neutralizes much of the intense, “burning” sensation caused by capsaicin. Instead of the more abrasive heat of the spicy food being felt on the tongue, the sweetness allows for other flavors that might have previously been overshadowed by heat to shine on your taste buds.
It’s why hot sauces like Sriracha are so popular; a modest dose of sugar helps to balance the varied and relatively intense flavors of the peppers used in the sauce, making it more appealing to the senses than undiluted heat. It’s a winning method to use when cooking spicy foods, and it only gets tastier with more flavor profiles added to the mix, which brings us to our next point...
Cranberries are a surprisingly varied fruit within their own sets of tastes, explained by The Tasting Table. They’re naturally sweet, yet carry their own acids and tartness, which can be either a challenge to neutralize or a breeze to utilize depending on your cooking philosophy. In conjunction with jalapenos, and the bacon used in this recipe, well-paired notes of every major flavor group is present.
Fats and saltiness from the bacon, sweetness, and tartness from the cranberries, and spiciness and a small amount of bitterness from jalapenos mean that every section of the tongue is being targeted with the same care. The end result is a recipe that you won’t forget for a while!
Jalapeno cranberry pizza in your oven
Once you’ve got all the pizza toppings ready, you’ll probably be itching to fire this eclectic recipe up in your own wood-fired oven. Thankfully, like most pizzas, it’s a simple process that only takes a small part of your evening! Follow the recipe below, and then let us know how it turned out!
- Pizza shell (see our recipe here)
- 1 cup marinara sauce
- 4 strips of cooked bacon, diced
- 2 Tbsp roasted garlic
- 2 jalapenos, sliced with seeds removed
- 1 cup jellied cranberries
- Preheat your wood fired pizza oven to 750 degrees.
- Evenly coat pizza shell with marinara. Scatted diced bacon and jalapenos. With a spoon, dollop cranberries and roasted garlic at even intervals.
- Bake until dough is golden brown, about 2-3 minutes.
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