Did you get roses for Valentine's Day? After reading about this pizza sauce, I bet you wish you'd gotten Indigo Rose tomatoes from your local Community Supported Agriculture farm share instead.
One of the reasons I love my CSA is the variety of colorful produce that shows up in the box each week. It's like my own personal Iron Chef challenge to figure out what to make with each week's box full of secret ingredients. And the taste--fresh produce just tastes so much better.
If you've never heard of a CSA farm share, check out Local Harvest. There you can use your zip code (in the US) to search for CSA farms that deliver to locations near you. Late winter is the time to join a CSA. By paying in advance you enable your farmer to purchase seeds and repair equipment at the beginning of the growing season. In return, you get a share of the farm fresh produce all season long. You're supporting a local business and you get to taste delicious veggies like these Indigo Rose tomatoes!
And now for something completely different.
Not really. When I made the spinach dough I knew that I was going to continue to explore adding veggies from my CSA farm share into my family's pizza crust--not just on top of it.
But where to start? To not quote a Monty Python film involving a lecture in a British boys' school, I can't go leaping into, for example, mustard green pizza crust. Though the idea is intriguing . . . I wonder what I'd top it with? More greens? Bacon?
Ahem. Move your coat to the lower peg and let's move on.
Instead of going to the freezer stash for slow-roasted tomatoes, or pesto, or pumpkin to try in a crust, I turned right and looked at the Strategic Winter Squash Reserve. Specifically, because they stand head and shoulders above the rest (get it? above?)
And play I did! If you're on my Farm Fresh Feasts Facebook page, you've seen the golden and pillowy eggnog and butternut squash crust. The recipe will be up here during eggnog season, because I'm all about eating seasonally with my CSA vegetables (and good deals on eggnog after the holidays).
To start us off here though, I also made a plain cheese pizza with a shredded butternut--nog free--crust. If you are going meatless on Fridays, keep in mind this pizza! Using one of the packages of Fresh Tomato Pesto I'd put up in the fall, from Heather at In Her Chucks' wonderful Cherry Tomato Pesto recipe, this pizza is another not-so-simple cheese pizza. Sure, it was simple enough for me to truthfully tell my daughter:
It's a cheese pizza.But in reality it is a Five Cheese Pizza with
And with that lofty name, let's get to it--shall we?
|Anyone else see moonlight on the ocean in this one?|
Butternut Squash Pizza Dough (makes 2 crusts)3/4 cup (180 ml) lukewarm water (+ 1 Tablespoon (15ml) if you need it later)
1 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups shredded butternut squash, cooked (I nuked mine a few minutes)
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/3 cup (80 ml) olive oil
I wrote up a long post about general pizza-making hints and tips--you can find my Pizza Primer here.
Add yeast to 3/4 cup water to let it dissolve and get ready for the day's meal. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl (I used my stand mixer), place squash and salt. Stir briefly to combine. Pour in yeast. Dump flours on top. Start mixing (I use my paddle here), adding the oil as the dough gets stiff. A few minutes after the ingredients have combined, if the dough still seems rough, add a tablespoon of water and give it a few minutes to work in. Because you're working with a vegetable, the water content of any given squash will be different and I want you to go slowly adding additional water. Continue mixing until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and makes a ball around the paddle (you may need to add another tablespoon of water to your dough). You'll see streaks of squash throughout. Place into an oiled container (I use a lidded bowl or a gallon size zip top bag, depending on the free space in my fridge and how long until I'm going to turn the dough into a pizza) and set aside. If you're going to use it right away, divide the dough in half and place each ball on an oiled piece of parchment and keep on reading.
You can make the dough up to 3 days before you're going to bake, just toss it in the fridge and bring it out a good 30 minutes before you start to preheat your oven so it is pliable and easy to work when you're ready to make the crust.
|This photo shows a full recipe of dough (yes, another pizza is coming!)|
Five Cheese Pizza with
(Three is the number of ingredients, and the number of ingredients shall be three. Five is right out.)
Funky Orange Purple Indigo Rose Tomato and Almond Pesto on a Butternut Squash Crust
1/2 portion of the above Butternut Squash Pizza Dough
1/2 to 1 cup
1 1/2 cups shredded five cheese Italian blend cheese (or the Italian blend cheese of your choice)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. If you have a pizza stone, place it in the oven (mine never leaves!) to preheat as well. On an oiled piece of parchment, stretch out the dough into the shape that strikes your fancy and yet also works well for a pizza. Top with the sauce of your choice, spreading thinly nearly to the edges. [If you've frozen the tomato pesto when tomatoes are ripe for you, drain off the bit of fluid that accumulates at the top of the container. It's delicious if you're tossing this with a pasta, but makes your pizza too wet.] Scatter cheese evenly across the top.
What is your quest? What is your favorite color? What is the average air speed of an unladen swallow? What am I even talking about?? Do you participate in a CSA?This post is shared with the Creative HomeAcre Hop and the Farmgirl Friday Blog Fest at Let This Mind Be In You, the Wednesday Fresh Foods Link Up at Gastronomical Sovereignty, Taste and Tell Thursday, and What's In The Box at In Her Chucks (source of that great tomato pesto recipe!).