Monday, June 17, 2013

Balsamic Roasted Vegetable Pizza

You're probably thinking, "Really, pizza?  You just posted about pizza!"  Well, I had a pizza craving... and I wanted to experiment with veggies and a balsamic glaze.  A sophisticated pizza.  Kind of.  Anyway, the husband was game to try it, so I looked for a recipe, just to see if a fantastic one was already in existence.

I was mildly disappointed.  The recipes that I found required you to roast the vegetables separately, and then assemble the pizza.  Ugh, how time-consuming!  The beauty of homemade pizza is that it doesn't take that long, yet it still tastes amazing.  I was not interested in useless steps, so I stuck with the 'shaved vegetable' technique of the Shaved Asparagus Pizza and just tweaked the ingredients a bit.

With all of these vegetables, it's a healthy meal, right?  We're going to go with 'yes.'

Of course, after making this, we did have some extra vegetables lying about, so I made it again the next day.  Oops.  No complaints from our table, however!

Balsamic Roasted Vegetable Pizza
Makes 1 full size pizza - number of servings is up to you!

1 recipe of your favorite pizza dough (I recommend a Jiffy crust for ease!)
1 small shallot, sliced thinly
2-3 mushrooms, sliced thinly
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
1 small zucchini
1 carrot
1 small bell pepper or a few small, sweet peppers, thinly sliced
4-5 spears asparagus
1/4-1/2 cup grated Parmesan and/or Pecorino
1/2 pound mozzarella, shredded or cut into small cubes
2 tsp olive oil
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 tsp honey
1 Tbsp fresh rosemary, minced
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
Several grinds black pepper
Truffle salt/oil (optional)

Oven: Preheat your oven to the hottest temperature it goes, or about 500 in most cases. If you use a pizza stone, have it in there.Whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and honey.  Set aside.

Prepare veggies: For asparagus - no need to snap off ends; they can be your “handles” as you peel them. Holding a single asparagus spear by its tough end, lay it flat on a cutting board and using a vegetable peeler, create long shavings of asparagus by drawing the peeler from the base to the top of the stalk. Repeat with remaining stalks and don’t fret some pieces are unevenly thick (such as the end of the stalk, which might be too thin to peel); the mixed textures give a great character to the pizza. Discard tough ends. Peel carrot and then use peeler to create long shavings, like asparagus.  Use peeler in the same fashion for zucchini (I only went partway through it until I got to the seedy part).  I ended up using only half the zucchini, and half the carrot.  Thinly slice the mushrooms and shallot.

Pat veggies dry with paper towel (I noticed my pizza got a bit 'wet' without doing this).  In a large bowl, toss zucchini, carrot, asparagus, shallot, mushrooms, peppers, and garlic with olive oil, balsamic vinegar and honey mixture.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Assemble and bake pizza: Roll or stretch out your pizza dough to a 12-inch round. Either transfer to a floured or cornmeal-dusted pizza peel (if using a pizza stone in the oven) or to a floured or cornmeal-dusted tray to bake it on. IF you're using a Jiffy crust, pre-bake the crust as directed (at 425 degrees).

Sprinkle pizza dough with Parmesan/Pecorino (save a bit for the top) and minced rosemary, then mozzarella. Pile shaved vegetables on top. Top with remaining Parmesan/Pecorino. Bake pizza for 10 to 15 minutes at 500 degrees, or until edges are browned, the cheese is bubbly and the vegetables are lightly charred. Remove from the oven and immediately sprinkle truffle salt or oil, then slice and eat.


1 comment:

  1. This pizza is awesome! A nice departure from the old stand-by tomato sauce. I have made this twice already, there were requests for a second round.