If you can't find Manchego cheese, Pecorino Romano would be a good substitute. If using fresh chorizo sausage, remove from casing, crumble and cook in a frying pan before adding to pizza. Will make two 12-inch pizzas or Four 8-inch pizzas.
Pizza Dough (via Jim Lahey) OR use store-bought:
500gramsall-purpose flour3 3/4 cups
1gramactive dry yeast1/4 tsp
16gramsfine sea salt2 tsp
350gramswater1 1/2 cups
Pizza Sauce (or use store-bought):
28ozcan plum tomatoes
Freshly ground pepper
1large red onionsliced
10inchpiece of cured Spanish-style chorizo sausagepulled apart in to small chunks (** See note below)
2cupsManchego cheesegrated, plus more shaved for the garnish
Fresh baby arugulafor garnish
** Cured chorizo sausage is not fresh sausage. It has been cured and/or smoked and is semi-dried, like Kielbassa, so could be sliced up and eaten out of hand, if you liked. It is often found in the deli section of your grocery, in sweet or hot versions. Either one is fine, depending on your taste. Try to find one that isn't rock hard (should give a little if squeezed), or you'll have a heck of a time pulling it apart. If you can't find, you could use fresh chorizo sausage (often seen in the meat department, with other fresh sausages), but you would need to remove the sausage from the casing, crumble and pan fry before adding to your pizza.
For the pizza dough: In a medium bowl, thoroughly blend the flour, yeast, and salt. Add the water and, with a wooden spoon and/or your hands, mixing thoroughly. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and allow it to rise at room temperature (about 72°) for 18 hours or until it has more than doubled.
Flour a work surface and scrape out the dough. Divide it into 2 or 4 equal parts (for 2 large or 4 small pizzas, as you like) and shape them. For each portion, start with the right side of the dough and pull it toward the center, then do the same with the left, then the top, then the bottom. (The order doesn't actually matter; what you want is four folds.) Shape each portion into a round and turn seam side down. Mold the dough into a neat circular mound. The mounds should not be sticky; if they are, dust with more flour.
If you don't intend to use the dough right away, wrap the balls individually in plastic and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Return to room temperature by leaving them out on the counter, covered in a damp cloth, for 2 to 3 hours before needed.
For the pizza sauce: In a large saucepan, melt 2 Tbsp. butter over medium heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for about 1 minute, or until softened and fragrant (do not allow to brown). Add tomatoes and spices, salt and pepper. Break up tomatoes roughly with a spoon. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then reduce heat to low and allow to simmer for 30-45 minutes, until reduced and thickened. The sauce won't be super thick or smooth. If you prefer it thicker, allow to simmer longer and/or puree with an immersion blender.
For the caramelized onions: In a frying pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and a bit of salt, then stir to coat. Cook over medium heat until onions start to soften. Reduce heat to medium low. Continue cooking and stirring for about 30 minutes more, adding a few tablespoons of water a couple of times and allowing it to cook off. This will help to soften the onions, as well as preventing the skillet from becoming too dry.
Once the onions have cooked for about 30 minutes and are quite soft, increase the heat to medium-high. Add the sugar, balsamic and a bit more salt and cook, stirring, until onions are browned and caramelized. Remove to a bowl and set aside or refrigerate until needed.
To prepare the pizza: Preheat oven to 500° F. with rack 8 inches below broiler. If you are using a pizza stone, put it in the cold oven and allow to heat with the oven. Allow to pre-heat for about 30 minutes.
Form dough into a rough circle. (I like to do this on a cornmeal sprinkled piece of parchment paper. Place parchment on to a baking sheet if you aren't using a pizza stone). Spread a generous layer of pizza sauce, the dot with caramelized onions. Scatter some crumbled chorizo on top, then top with some grated Manchego.
If using parchment, trim the parchment back very close to the edge of the pizza, so it won't burn in the oven. Place pizza on to pizza stone on the parchment. (Or place baking sheet in oven). Allow to cook for 5 minutes, then without opening the oven door, switch your oven to "Broil" and allow to cook 4-5 minutes longer, or until cooked, browned and bubbly.
Be sure to read the “Ingredient and Cook's Notes" (above the recipe card!), where I share more detailedtips, variations and substitution suggestions for this recipe!