I can’t believe July 4th is almost here. I don’t know about you, but it snuck up on me this year. For me, this holiday usually marks the middle of summer, but for some reason it feels like it’s here a little too early. I’m glad it’s here though. It gives me the opportunity to do something I haven’t done before: make a flag fruit pizza.
The first time I made fruit pizza was in college. As I’ve told you before, I wasn’t real handy in the kitchen back then. Unbeknownst to me, I made the cookie on an ancient (ie: not non-stick) pizza pan. My 19-year-old self didn’t realize that there was anything besides non-stick pans; therefore, I didn’t grease it. Ruh roh, Rorge.
I made the pizza in the pan and when I went to slice it, it became apparent that I would need a chisel to get it out. The cookie had become one with the pan and I. WAS. CRUSHED. It looked beautiful, but it was inedible. My sweet mom insisted that it would be fine; we could just eat it right out of the pan. Which she did, insuring me that it really was delicious, even as she crunched away like Cousin Eddie chomping on the burnt Christmas turkey. I swear sparks flew out of her mouth as she attempted to eat it.
Luckily, that didn’t happen this time. Actually, it wasn’t due to luck but more to the fact that I used parchment paper. And I greased it. But luckily I remembered to do it!
This is what you need:
First, we need to make the glaze. Start by tossing some sugar into a pot…
Along with some orange juice…
A little water…
A splash of lemon juice…
And some cornstarch.
Whisk it all together and bring it to a boil. Continue to boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. After it boils, remove from the heat and let it cool while you make the rest of the pizza.
Onward! Now let’s make the “crust”, which is actually a big sugar cookie. I really like this sugar cookie recipe, so that’s what I’m going with this time. But you could easily use store-bought sugar cookie dough, and that would be just hunky dorey. If you do that, make sure to follow the package temperature and times.
Preheat the oven to 375° and then dump some flour into a mixing bowl…
Along with some salt and baking soda.
Whisk everything together and set the bowl aside.
Throw your softened butter into the bowl of a stand mixer. With the paddle attachment, mix it until it’s creamy. Add in some sugar and mix again until it’s light and fluffy.
Add your egg…
And some lemon extract and vanilla.
Then let ‘er rip. Mix just until the egg has been incorporated.
Then add the sour cream and mix once again.
Add the flour mixture…
And mix until it comes together in a ball.
Dump the dough onto a piece of parchment paper that’s a little larger than the size of your pan. You want the parchment paper to hang over the sides so you can remove it from the pan easily.
Speaking of pans… I used an 11×17″ cookie sheet. You can probably use a smaller or larger pan; your crust will just be a little thicker or thinner. Just make sure you use one that has edges.
Once you’ve dumped out the dough, roll it into a rectangle-ish shape that’s about the size of your pan.
And then transfer the parchment paper with the dough onto the cookie sheet.
Press the dough out to fit into the pan and bake at 375° for 10-15 minutes or until the cookie is golden. Once it’s done, remove it from the oven and cool completely, at least an hour.
While the cookie’s cooking, we’ll make the “sauce”. It’s basically a cream cheese topping. This recipe makes enough for a decent layer on the pizza; however, if you like a lot of icing/ topping, feel free to double to recipe.
Toss some softened cream cheese into a mixing bowl and beat it with a hand mixer.
Next, add some vanilla and powdered sugar and mix until everything is incorporated…
And then add some whipped cream. Or “whipped topping”. Mix one more time.
Place in the refrigerator until the cookie has cooled.
While the cookie is cooling, go ahead and slice the strawberries.
Wait until you’re ready to assemble the pizza before you slice the bananas. Otherwise, they’ll turn brown while they’re hanging out, waiting for the party. Bananas don’t like to wait.
Let’s build this thing! Plop the sauce on top of the crust…
Then spread it out evenly across the surface.
In the upper lefthand corner, line up the blueberries to form a rectangle…
And then start lining up the strawberries and bananas.
As soon as you’ve lined up one row of bananas, brush on some of the glaze. (Remember the glaze? I bet you forgot about it.) We’re doing this immediately so they don’t brown.
Continue to line up the strawberries and bananas, glazing the bananas after each row.
Once the cookie has been covered with the strawberries and bananas, glaze the entire thing.
If you want to present it on a plate or platter, carefully, lift it out of the pan by the parchment paper. Make sure to lift from the long sides (top and bottom) so that you don’t risk it sagging in the middle. Just cut the parchment paper edges away…
And there you have it… Beautimous!
Happy July 4th everyone!
Here’s the recipe:
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ orange juice
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1 ½ teaspoons cornstarch
- 3 ½ cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup butter, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 ½ teaspoons lemon extract
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 4 oz (½ an 8 oz container) frozen whipped topping, thawed
- 2 bananas, sliced (wait to slice until ready to assemble)
- 1 lb strawberries, halved
- 6 oz blueberries
- In a sauce pan, whisk together ¼ cup granulated sugar and the next 4 ingredients. Bring to a boil and continue to boil for 2-3 minutes, whisking the entire time. Turn off the heat and let the glaze cool completely.
- Preheat the oven to 375°.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk or sift together the flour, baking soda and salt. Set the bowl aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the softened butter with the paddle attachment. Add the sugar and mix until it's light and fluffy.
- Add in the egg, lemon extract and vanilla and mix just until the egg is incorporated.
- Add the sour cream and mix thoroughly.
- Gradually add the flour and mix until everything comes together in a ball.
- Dump the dough out onto a piece of greased parchment paper that is cut to 15"x21". Roll the dough out into a rectangle shape. Transfer the dough to a 11"x17" cookie sheet (make sure the sheet has edges). Press the dough to the edge of the pan and into to the corners.
- Bake at 375° for 10-15 minutes or until the cookie is lightly golden.
- Remove from the oven and let it cool completely, at least for an hour.
- In a mixing bowl, beat the softened cream cheese with a hand mixer.
- Add in the powdered sugar and vanilla and beat again.
- Add the whipped topping and beat again until everything is combined. Store in the refrigerator until ready to assemble.
- Once the cookie crust has cooled completely, spread the sauce/ cream cheese topping over the entire cookie.
- Line the blueberries up in the shape of a rectangle in the upper lefthand corner.
- Starting at the top, make a row of strawberries, then make a row of bananas. Brush a thin layer of glaze over the bananas after each row is complete. Continue until the entire cookie is covered in strawberry and banana stripes, glazing after each banana row is complete.
- Once the flag is complete, glaze the rest of the fruit.
- To remove from the pan, grab the parchment paper on the long sides (top and bottom) to ensure that the pizza doesn't sag in the middle.
- The sauce recipe makes enough to thoroughly cover the entire cookie with a good amount; however, if you prefer a lot of icing/ topping, you can double the recipe.