Monday, August 27, 2012

Asparagus and scallion pizza

Last weekend, I had a party and tossed pizza for several hours, feeding 10 hungry people. I made 6 different kinds of pizzas - and personally, I think this one was the winner, although I have never made it before. 

And if you're the one making it, pizza is not fattening - kneading all that dough then rolling it out is a major workout.

Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen 

1 pound pizza dough (you can buy it or make your own - I'll upload a recipe as soon as I figure out the best one!)
1/2 pound mozzarella cheese
1/2 pound asparagus
3 scallions (not pictured, because I was too frantic juggling dough and bottles and glasses and plates)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons olive oil
a shake or two of salt and pepper

Set the oven to 400F.

Chop up the scallions and set aside. You'll be sprinkling this at the very end.

Roll out the dough as thin as it will go - this is a lot of work (as attested by my painful arms today) but worth the effort. Slice the mozzarella then shred it to pieces, sprinkling the dough evenly.

In a bowl, shave the asparagus using a vegetable peeler. This isn't as easy as it sounds, as the stalks can break to bits in your fingers. Shaving from the top down or the bottom up - whatever is easier for you. Make sure you discard the tough bottom ends. The heads of the asparagus are tender so can be left whole.

Toss with the olive oil, lemon juice and a shake or two of salt and pepper. Make an airy heap on the pizza and pop in the oven (400F) and bake for 10 minutes or until the bottom of the crust is nicely tanned. (Don't put this pizza on the top rack; the beautiful asparagus will shrivel and burn while your dough is still white and chewy.)

Sprinkle with scallions and serve immediately. I pity people who don't like scallions - it so nicely offsets the oiliness of foods and brings a fresh taste with a bit of a bite. The combination of creamy mozz, very green and spring-like asparagus and fresh scallion is divine. I made another one for myself the next day!


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