Pizza Primavera

Pizza Primavera

Just because it is cold and dreary outside, doesn’t mean you can’t pretend the good weather has returned – in your cooking at least. Produce picked in Chilean spring or summer is available at your nearby neighborhood supermarket.

Modeled off of pasta primavera, this pizza takes a similarly everything-but-the-kitchen-sink approach to its ingredients. Though I make it more or less the same way every time, it is the perfect opportunity to put that half onion, extra tomato or leftover bit of zucchini to good use before it goes bad. Basically, you can add your choice of spring vegetables, detracting, adding, or otherwise mixing and matching. Just make sure to use ‘spring’ vegetables. Squash, beets, or potatoes have a different texture and taste profile that don’t fit in the same way.

With only five or ten minutes of active cooking time (depending on how quickly you chop vegetables), this is a great quick, healthy, inexpensive alternative to take-out or a microwave meal when you are busy or get home late.

Prep time: 20-25 minutes
Serves: 3-4

Ingredients

  • pre-made pizza dough (you can find this in the bakery section of most major supermarkets, but make sure to get dough, not the Boboli-style pre-cooked crust)
  • one tomato
  • one bell pepper (or two halves or different colored peppers)
  • half a white or sweet onion
  • a piece of zucchini
  • a piece of Parmesan cheese (or other hard Italian cheese like pecorino romano or robusto)
  • Italian seasoning
  • olive oil

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 450.
  2. Shape the pizza dough by holding it in your hands by the top and let gravity pull out the bottom edge a bit. Keep turning the pizza a few inches until you have made it all the way around twice.
  3. Lay the dough on your pan and push out the edges to achieve a more or less flat surface. If you are not using a non-stick baking sheet or pizza stone, make sure you spray with Pam or other cooking oil before putting the pizza down.
  4. Using a pastry brush (or the back of a spoon in a pinch) coat the top of the dough with a very thin layer of olive oil.
  5. Grate or otherwise sprinkle about two tablespoons of Italian seasoning evenly over the dough. If you don’t have the Italian seasoning mix, you can use oregano, black pepper, basil, and a touch a rosemary.
  6. Dice or roughly chop the vegetables and sprinkle them over the pizza. Start with the tomatoes, cover with onions and zucchini, then bell peppers.
  7. Using a microplane or other very fine grater, make a dusting of cheese over the vegetables and sprinkle a bit more Italian seasoning over the top.
  8. Pop the pizza in the oven and check after ten minutes. The crust should be lightly golden in some spots. Don’t wait till it is golden all over, or the crust will get too hard and tough to bite into.
  9. Let the pizza cool for a few minutes before slicing. With this many toppings, slice with a large chef’s or butcher knife instead of a pizza cutter for optimum results.

Enjoy!

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