I’ve never been a huge pizza fan. I’m not really sure why–the main ingredients make up the majority of my diet: bread, veggies, and cheese. I think all of the greasy, gluey abominations out there—and living one memorable year in college with four boys who ate them often—ruined the idea of pizza for me. But in recent years, I’ve started to warm up to the idea of fresh, thinner-crust, neapolitan style pizza.
After reading Smitten Kitchen’s awesome post(s) about simple pizza in your own kitchen, I went home after work one day and made one for Ben and Chuck. It was good. Really good. But the crust wasn’t quite right. I resolved to try again, soon. And trying again became somewhat of an obsession, as the following night’s pizza was also really good…but what if I added lemon zest to the ricotta? and what if we used a honey & wine pizza dough recipe?
And so began the Week of Pizzas. Or maybe it was two weeks. It’s kind of a blur now. Suffice it to say I’ve made enough pizzas that it has become a mainstay of Yellow House suppers.
Tonight, we have friends visiting and I’m attempting personal-sized versions that everyone can top with whatever their hearts desire. But the recipe I’m posting is inspired by a pizza I made one day for lunch when Chuck and I were
playing hookie working from home.
Pizza dough is slathered with a thin layer of garlicky, peppery ricotta and topped with spinach. Then, caramelized red onions with a dash of red pepper flakes and sauteed mushrooms are spooned over the top. The whole thing is baked up in a hot oven and ready in about 15 minutes.
The result was savory with just a touch of sweetness from the caramelized onions, balanced out by the earthy mushrooms and spinach. The thinned-out ricotta ‘white sauce’ base is such a nice change from what pizza joint ‘white pizzas’ often taste like–storebought jarred alfredo sauce.
It definitely helped us get through the rest of our, um, work.
Pizza with red onions, spinach, & mushrooms
For the dough, I subbed in half whole wheat, but don’t use too much or it will weigh down the dough.
You will need
For dough (adapted from Smitten Kitchen’s honey & wine pizza dough recipe):
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon honey
2 tablespoons white wine
Pinch kosher salt
1/2 cup water
For the ricotta ‘white sauce':
1/2 cup ricotta
Salt and pepper
For the toppings:
3/4 cup spinach
1 red onion
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Red pepper flakes
1/2 cup sliced cremini or baby bella mushrooms
Salt and pepper
Mix together honey, yeast, and wine until yeast is dissolved.