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grilled butternut and radicchio pizza + trials


This recipe kind of came to be out of spite. I originally intended to offer up a seasonal and sweet little pumpkin doughnut recipe with cranberry filling and fun-shine happy fall times. I was trying way too hard. To say that it didn’t work out as I imagined would be an understatement. Like the hugest understatement. Next course of action: I went out and bought myself a proper doughnut and ate it only slightly begrudgingly. I was feeling more like myself, things were good. Then I thought about making an off-the-cuff kind of pizza, abandoning any idea of making doughnuts altogether. Whoa, all of a sudden I was feeling a lot better.

I’m not sure you could even technically call this a pizza. I used roasted butternut squash and garlic mash as the “sauce” and this genius recipe as inspiration for the dough that doesn’t even require rising time. It takes literally 10 minutes to make. Then I grilled the whole thing and essentially put a lemony and fresh salad on top. Maybe you could call it a grilled flatbread with very balanced stuff on it? I like to get technical, but I’m still inclined to call this pizza. It’s such a feel-good word.

I put some basil and swiss chard pesto into the mix too. I love squash and traditional pesto together so I thought it would be even better here. I never make pesto from a recipe really, just kind of throw some toasted nuts/seeds in the food processor with the leaves of my choosing, olive oil, a bit of salt and pepper and blitz it around and scrape down the sides until it seems like the right texture and it tastes good. It’s a total intuition thing and it always works out just right. Wait that’s like, 98 percent of cooking right?




grilled butternut squash pizza with lemony radicchio slaw
dough recipe adapted from The Faux Martha
serves: 4-6
notes:  You could use arugula, endive or whatever greens you like in place of the radicchio. If you don’t have a barbecue, preheat your oven to 450 degrees F and put everything on the pizza except the radicchio mixture and bake for 15-20 minutes. Also, advice on grilling pizza: have absolutely everything at the ready when you’re making it. Time is of the essence!

squash:
1 small butternut squash, cut in half and seeds removed
4 garlic cloves, unpeeled
2 sprigs sage (optional)
salt and pepper
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

pesto (there will be some leftover!):
3/4-1 cup basil and swiss chard leaves (or all basil, all chard etc)
1/4 cup walnuts, toasted
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
3 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

dough:
1 cup warm water (not too hot!)
1 tbsp agave nectar
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 packet (2 1/4 tsp) active dry yeast
1 3/4 cup white spelt flour
1 cup whole spelt flour
1 tsp fine sea salt

slaw
1 head radicchio, outer leaves removed, cored and sliced
4 sprigs flat leaf parsley, leaves finely sliced
juice of half a lemon
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper

assembly/extras:
2 tbsp oil of your choosing
1 shallot, peeled, halved and finely sliced
small handful of pine nuts, toasted

Roast the squash: preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Season and place the squash halves face down on a parchment-lined baking sheet. In the little cavity where the seeds were, sneak the garlic cloves underneath. If using the sage, place the whole sprig under the flesh of the squash (see picture above). Roast until very tender, about 35-40 minutes. Once cool enough to handle, scrape out flesh into a bowl. Squeeze garlic cloves out of their peels into the bowl as well. Add oil, salt, pepper and a splash of water. Stir and mash with a spatula until smooth. Set aside.

Make the pesto: place all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until everything is broken up a bit. Scrape down sides of the bowl with a spatula. Put the processor on high until a paste starts to form. Scrape down the sides again. Let it rip one more time until it’s super smooth. Season to taste. Scrape into a bowl and put a dab of oil on top to prevent discolouration. Set aside.

Make the dough: pour the water into a large bowl. Add the yeast, agave and oil. Whisk to combine. Let the yeast proof for about five minutes or until you see bubbles forming on the surface. Add the flours and salt. Stir with a wooden spoon until combine. Knead with your hands until you have a smooth lump of dough.

Make the slaw: combine all of the ingredients radicchio, parsley, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper as close to serving time as possible. Store in the fridge until ready to serve.

Make the pizza!: Get your barbecue going to a medium-medium high flame. Roll dough out to about 1/4 inch thickness on a floured cutting board, pizza peel or anything flat that you can bring out to the barbecue. Brush one side with oil completely. Either flip or gently guide the oiled side onto the grates (you can oil the grates as an extra non-stick insurance policy). Brush the top, now-exposed side of the dough with oil and put the lid down. Wait about 3-5 minutes.

The dough should be browning and getting grill marks on one side and bubbling through on the surface. Flip it over. Spread the butternut squash and garlic mixture evenly onto the browned side of crust. Dollop the pesto on top and sprinkle the shallots on. Put the lid down and wait another 5-6 minutes before removing the pizza.

Place pizza on serving plate/large cutting board and top with the radicchio slaw. Sprinkle with pine nuts, cut into slices and serve.

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Melissa // thefauxmartha12/10/2011 - 9:57 pm

This looks sooo yummy! Love that you grilled it. You are the bomb.com.

Cassie l Bake Your Day12/10/2011 - 10:10 pm

This is amazing pizza…love it grilled. I tried this pizza crust a couple weeks ago and it’s amazing, we loved it. Your blog is lovely!

amy12/10/2011 - 10:36 pm

i looove smooth squash as a sauce situation! so good. its kinda pizza blasphemy but i’m down with and totally support the use of PIZZA here. sometimes you need a pizza that isn’t a pizza but FEELS like a pizza.

(what do you shoot with? yr pics are purdy)

Shelley12/10/2011 - 11:41 pm

this looks amazing Laura! Seriously, I bought a butternut squash at the farmers market this weekend and now I think I know how I will use it! Great post. Lovely pics, as always!

Michelle13/10/2011 - 12:15 am

Omonomonom! Gorgeous and drool-inducing, as always.

Can you make pesto in a blender, say, if you’re kitchen-supply lacking and don’t have a food processor:) ?

[...] See the article here: | grilled butternut and radicchio pizza + trials [...]

Laura13/10/2011 - 6:53 am

It’s life-changing (life-affirming even?) crust eh? Love it. And thank you :)

Laura13/10/2011 - 6:56 am

Amy! It feels wrong, but in the rightest of ways. I use a Canon Rebel T1i and my main lens is a 50 mm/1.4 USM. The lens is the real deal for sure. Small, light, surprisingly cheap and awesome for food pictures.

Laura13/10/2011 - 6:59 am

Michelle yes! Just maybe make sure the oil is right at the base of the blender so that it has some liquid to get going faster. You might have to stop it a couple times to push the foliage down. I would try to chop up the leaves and nuts a bit first to make the whole thing easier.

Twin Tastes13/10/2011 - 8:16 am

This looks delicious! What a creative way to use squash and radicchio. . and on a pizza?!? Even better

amy13/10/2011 - 9:15 am

amazing! that is one covetable lense… i use a pentax and for a lense with such a nice wide aperture we’re talkin’ $900ish. i envy youu!

amy13/10/2011 - 9:18 am

er, right after i wrote that i decided to look somewhere other than the pentax site and they’re a leeeetle less used all over. ha. your pictures are beauts.

Fresh and Foodie13/10/2011 - 1:21 pm

This looks absolutely fantastic. Beautiful photos, too. I look forward to trying this.

Peggy13/10/2011 - 1:40 pm

Well, whatever you call it, this. looks. amazing. For real! I can’t wait to cut open my butternut for this =)

Jill @ A Cook's Nook13/10/2011 - 3:00 pm

The colors are so vibrant- your photography is fantastic! I love unique pizza recipes and this one looks very flavorful. I can’t wait to try it

Richa@HobbyandMore13/10/2011 - 4:20 pm

so pretty colors!! i love everything about this pizza! the spices, nuts and grains! and the fantastic pictures!!

Isobelle13/10/2011 - 6:42 pm

This is such a beautiful pizza. I would love to try making this some time.

Anna14/10/2011 - 3:01 am

I am not an expert in the vegan-world. I am just actually starting to love the world of vegan-inspired dishes. I am not familiar with radicchio. Is it the one in the picture that looks like cabbage? Or is it a cabbage variety? It looks so crunchy, so I am sure they taste great. Thanks for answering my queries.

Laura14/10/2011 - 7:30 am

Yes it’s the one that looks like a cabbage in the picture! But the taste is closer to the endive family, a little bitter. It’s more crisp with a higher water content as well.

gina17/10/2011 - 2:35 pm

WOW! this looks amazingly delish! I want to make this. But, do you think it’s ok to use pre-cut butternut squash from Trader Joe’s instead?
I bought a package of that this weekend and was looking for a new creative recipe…this is it for sure!

Laura17/10/2011 - 3:11 pm

I think it should be fine. Just toss the cubes in oil and maybe chop the sage to combine with it. Maybe don’t roast it until it’s browned and crispy, but just soft. It might be a bit drier so just add a bigger splash of water when you’re pureeing it. Hope it works out :)

gina18/10/2011 - 10:56 am

it worked out perfectly! best butternut squash recipe hands down!

Michelle @ DailyWaffle28/10/2011 - 1:13 pm

We used this as inspiration for dinner last night, subbing in kale pesto. We love-love-loved the radicchio slaw – I’m now a convert to the “salad pizza.” Thanks!

[...] first the red — the radicchio. I re-discovered how wonderful radicchio is thanks to this grilled butternut and radicchio pizza over at the First Mess. This pizza is, in two words, ridiculously delicious. Seriously. And the [...]

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Marlene @ Jade and Fern31/05/2013 - 11:48 am

I can’t wait to make this! Just shared it in a roundup on my blog: http://jadeandfern.com/2013/05/31/friday-finds-cravings/

[…] || Two || Three || Four || […]

[…] BUTTERNUT & RADICCHIO PIZZA. I love a pizza that brings its own salad.  This version from the First Mess tops the pie with a radicchio and Italian parsley slaw whose bitterness complements the sweetness […]

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[…] This recipe is a perfect spring comfort, brought to you by Laura of The Hot Mess. […]

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