Few things signal that Fall is officially here like butternut squash. Admittedly it is one of my favorite Fall veggies – firm, sweet and goes with almost everything. I found this recipe during the summer and knew I would save it for the first cool Fall Friday. The Love Muffin and I tend to make pizza on Fridays. Let me rephrase, the Love Muffin makes the dough, sauce, toppings and I just arrange them while drinking wine or beer. It’s such a great relationship that we have
Butternut Squash Pizza with Crispy Sage
Yield = one pizza
1 recipe of pizza dough or 1 pre-made ball of dough (we used wheat dough for this recipe)
1 small butternut squash (about a pound, but you will likely have leftover squash)
2 cloves garlic
fresh ricotta cheese
a few sprigs thyme, leaves removed
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
10-15 sage leaves
oil for frying (we used olive oil)
1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Remove the skin of the squash: Halve the squash and remove the seeds. The best way to cut the squash so that it cooks well on the pizza is to cut it into thin slices. We luckly had a fairly straight (rather than bulbous) squash so this was easy. You’ll want the slices to be no larger than a 1/4 of an inch thick. The thicker, the longer they take to pre-cook.
2. Place the slices of squash on parchment paper on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, season with kosher salt to taste, toss to coat, redistribute onto sheet in one layer and place in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until fork tender.
3. Meanwhile, peel and mince the garlic and mix it with the ricotta cheese, set aside. After rolling out the pizza dough and placing it on a prepared baking sheet, brush dough with olive oil. Then top it with salt, pepper, and grated Parmesan. Spread a thin layer of fresh ricotta over the crust. Sprinkle with fresh thyme to taste. Top the ricotta with baked squash slices. Top with more grated Parmesan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, fry the sage. Heat the oil in a sauce pan on medium, high heat. You can test the oil to find out if it’s hot enough by flicking a water droplet off of your finger. If it sizzles, it’s ready. The sage leaves should take no longer than 5 seconds in hot oil to crisp up. I tossed in one leaf first to see how it would fry up but it was pretty easy to tell when it was done (it curls!). So we threw in the rest. Let the sage cool on a plate with a paper towel.
5. Remove the pizza from the oven and top with the crispy sage. Voila! Pizza time!
Butternut squash, garlic ricotta, and fried sage pizza
This was a great pizza and it gave me a few ideas for new pizzas to make. Here’s to enjoying all of Fall’s bounty!
This recipe is adapted from Alexandra’s Kitchen.