Want to know a GREAT way to get your kiddos to eat their veggies? Disguise them in pizza! OR pick whatever veggies your kiddos DO eat, and substitute them on this tasty pesto pizza. Asparagus, peas, tomatoes and mushrooms would ALL be delicious!
- For Basil-Spinach Pesto:
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 1/2 cup basil leaves, lightly packed
- 1 1/2 cup spinach leaves, lightly packed
- 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
- For Pizza and Toppings:
- 1 head broccoli
- 1 package of pre-made pizza dough (Trader Joe's is my absolute favorite!!)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- One 8 ounce package frozen artichoke hearts, thawed
- 8 oz. shredded mozzarella
- 1 cup crumbled feta
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. If pizza dough has been refrigerated, remove from the fridge so it can warm up a bit. This allows the gluten to relax and will make the dough easier to work with.
Toast walnuts in a small skillet over medium-high heat, or in a toaster oven. The walnuts are done as soon as you smell them -- they will smell nutty and toasty. Don't walk away, though, because they burn quickly!
In the bowl of a food processor, combine walnuts, garlic, basil, and spinach and process until minced.
Add the parmesan, and with the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil. Process until completely smooth. Set aside.
Make the pizza:
Cut broccoli into small florets and place in a microwaveable dish with a lid. Reserve the stalks and freeze -- they are great to use to make vegetable stock.
Drizzle with a couple tablespoons water, cover, and microwave until just tender (about 3-4 minutes). Drain water from broccoli and set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, lightly coat a baking sheet with olive oil. Use a paper towel to spread the oil over the baking sheet and distribute evenly.
Place pizza dough on pan and press to the edges of the pan. If the dough isn't spreading well, let it sit for a few minutes to loosen up. Use your hands to spread the dough, so it fits as evenly as possible in the sheet pan.
Top dough with about half the pesto. You want the layer to be thin, so you will have pesto left over. Store the left over pesto in your fridge.
Sprinkle 3/4 of the mozzarella cheese over the pesto. Evenly distribute broccoli and artichokes over cheese. Top with remaining mozzarella and then sprinkle with feta.
Bake pizza for 25 to 35 minutes, or until crust is browned and cheese is lightly golden.
Let cool slightly, then cut and serve immediately.