Pizza and Cider: Tropical Heat

Servings: 10-12 Inch Pizza

I continue to expand my pizza dough style in ways similar to how I adapt my ciders, which means adjuncts. Adding adjuncts is a great way to create balance in hard cider, especially when all you have are eating and cooking apples (Sweets and Sharps). It also provide a ways to augment pizza dough for unique pizzas. For this pizza, I made a thick hand-stretched crust that had dried and diced organic mangos in it. We then took some inspiration from a Philippine mango pizza recipe and adapted it to the American Southwest, which means we paired the sweet from a homemade mango jam with the heat of some pickled Jalapeños and crushed red pepper flakes. We used organic cashew pieces to provide the texture, protein, and unctuous fat that you’d often expect from pepperoni or other cured sausage. Since we have migrated to an pescatarian diet, it’s fun to experiment with different vegetable proteins. The reality is that it’s a pizza that you don’t even realize is vegetarian. Given the heat and tropical fruit notes, I paired it with a cider using Pichia kluyveri, a non-Saccharomyces yeast that I trialed. It produces ciders that tend to have tropical fruit aromas, so it was a natural choice.

I must say that this is one of the best pizzas we have ever made and we have made a lot of pizzas. I’m also not qualifying this as one of the best vegetarian pizzas. It is just one of the best pizzas, period. The crust has crunch with great texture and chew, especially with some of the mangos. You first get some of the sweet from the mango jam but that is quickly replaced by a nice burn from the jalapeños and an almost buttery flavor from the cashews. It’s quite amazing and keeps calling you back for another piece. The hard cider was made using my “Tropical Breeze” version of the Pichia yeast. It was my favorite of the three Pichia kluyveri strains from last year’s trials. The cider has a lot of fruity aromas with some natural residual sweetness. It made for a perfect pairing with this pizza. Let’s review the details for this pizza recipe.



  • 200-300 Grams Unfed Sourdough Discard
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil 
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Cup Organic Strong Bread Flour (or All-Purpose)
  • 4 Ounces Water
  • 1/4 Cup Rough Chopped Dried Mango

Dough Preparation:

  • Mix sourdough discard, water, oil, and mango in a large mixing bowl.
  • Mix in flour and salt.
  • Knead the dough for 5 minutes.  If too dry, add teaspoon of water.  If too wet, add a little more flour. This dough should be relatively dry.  
  • Cover and let set for 1 hour.  
  • Use or freeze.  If freezing, set the dough in the refrigerator the day before you plan to use it and on the counter 1-2 hours before you use it.  
Tropical Heat Pizza
Tropical Heat Pizza: Mango, Jalapeño, Cashew



  • Pizza Dough
  • 1 Cup Mango Jam
  • 1-2 Medium Jalapeños (fresh or pickled)
  • 1 Red Pepper, Roasted (chop after roasting)
  • 1/4 Cup Cashew Pieces
  • 6 ounces Mozzarella Cheese, grated
  • Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

Pizza Preparation:

  • Roll or stretch dough into a 12-14 inch round in a pan or on parchment paper.
  • Spread Mango Jam evenly over the crust. You can add up to 1/2 cup more if you like it saucier. We used a simple homemade organic jam made by stewing fresh mango with some honey.
  • Evenly sprinkle the diced roasted red pepper over the pizza.
  • Evenly place the cashew pieces over the pizza. I usually break whole or larger pieces in half.
  • Place the sliced jalapeños evenly over the pizza. We usually make and always have pickled jalapeños available but freshly sliced work well too. You can remove seeds if you want a milder version.
  • Sprinkle the cheese over the pizza. We have been using a goats milk mozzarella, which can be less irritating if you are trying to minimize lactose intake.
  • Sprinkle with crushed red pepper flakes.
  • Bake at 500F(260C) for 6-8 Minutes until the cheese starts to brown. I use a pizza/bread steel.
  • Remove, let sit for a couple minutes, slice, and serve.

Pairing this pizza with a fruity cider that has a touch of sweetness is perfect. I selected some of my Pichia kluyveri ciders that I used for conducting yeast trials. They produce a cider that has tropical fruit notes and some residual sweetness.

Pichia kluyveri Yeast Trial
Pichia kluyveri Yeast Trial

Search the site for Pichia to find articles highlighting my research on Pichia kluyveri and other non-Saccharomyces yeasts including the results of my trial. The recipe for this cider uses freshly pressed apples that I inoculated with Pichia kluyveri yeast. Because I was doing a trial, I kept my approach standard and didn’t add any adjuncts like oak or other fruits. You can make this cider by obtaining this yeast from Prickly Cider on the Cider Yeast page located in “The Shop”. You can also get samples from the USDA or similar culture centers in your country. This yeast creates a very fruity cider. During propagation and after initial fermentation we noted aromas like banana and other tropical fruits, mango and even pineapple. We found this to be an excellent paring for our Tropical Heat pizza.

I hope this post inspires you to make your own pizza and cider pairings. If you enjoy reading about cider and how to make, follow me.

Here are some of my other pizza posts on

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