Welcome to the new and improved Carano's Cucina. I make a lot of kick ass food and go out to some amazing restaurants. Take a look around and make yourself at home :)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Zucchini Pizza Are You Insane??

Nope.  I'm not.  I've actually made zucchini pizza before with great success.  And considering it's getting to be end of summer and everyone has zucchini for sale to give, I decided to make it again, but just a bit different.  I, of course, start with Grandma's pizza dough.  It's always perfect so I'm not messing with a good thing.  While the dough was rising, I got four shallots.

Tops and bottoms cut off, skin still on, a drizzle of olive oil and a little salt, into some foil and then into a 400 degree oven for about 20-30 minutes.  When they come out, they are soft and delectable and full of yummy.

Now for the zucchini.  I had a pretty good sized zucchini from my brother's garden and two small yellow zucchini that I picked up at a farmer's market for 25¢ each.  Hey can't go wrong there!  Sliced thin and then a quick saute in some olive oil, salt and pepper. 

There's not need to go too far here, maybe a little color, but not a lot.  This is how my Grandma taught me to make a veggie pizza, always with a light saute before putting them on the dough.  I like it much better than putting the veg on raw.

Once the dough has risen, get it stretched out and and put on your pizza tray, your pizza peel or whatever you use to make pizza. 

Grandma's pizza pan... just an aside.   Anyway, once you have your dough laid out, give it a light brushing with some extra virgin olive oil and then sprinkle your chopped roasted shallots all over the dough.

Then, spread your zucchini on top.  And then some fresh basil leaves.

Now, what are we going to do about cheese?  There must be cheese!!  Well pull up a chair.  Because it's cheese rantin time!   There was one thing I wanted to make this pizza something different, something special.  Fresh ricotta.  Is that so much to ask?  Apparently it is.  While I was out Wednesday, I hit two grocery stores both with high end cheese counters.   No fresh ricotta.  One even said it's a seasonal item?  What does that even mean?  What is ricotta season?  After that debacle I went to an Italian imports store.  The minute I walked in the door I asked, "do you have fresh ricotta?" And was told that in fact they do.  Ahhh, saved!   I'm chastising myself for not having gone there in the first place.  But then, what do I see?  The woman behind the counter take out a big honkin tub of Miceli's ricotta.  For those of you not in this region where Miceli's is sold, it's the plastic tub of ricotta you get in the dairy aisle of the supermarket.  You know the stuff, right next to the sour cream.  This is NOT fresh ricotta.  There is a big difference.  My shock lead to my purchase of the lesser cheese because I couldn't pick my mouth up off the floor in time to object.

Now, armed with cheese I don't want for this pizza, what can I do?  Well, I can try a couple more places.  I had in my sights the gourmet market, West Point Market in Akron and DeVitis Italian Market in Akron.  I'm quite positive both places will have it, but since I'm already out and driving past West Point Market, I went there first.  JACKPOT.   But holy shit!   Fresh ricotta at West Point Market is $8.79 a pound!   This being an item I don't buy all that often, it seemed steep to me.  But alas, the bee in my bonnet about it would not stop buzzing so I bought half  pound and was on my way.

The ricotta gets dropped by teaspoonfuls onto the pizza in lovely little dollops of joy.  That ricotta was worth every single penny and I'd go back and buy it again, sticker shock and all.  It was absolutely delicious straight out of the container. 

Bake at 450 until the crust starts to brown, but not too brown (15-20 minutes)! 

And of course, the obligatory zebra plate picture.

Pretty damn delish.  Buon Cibo mia Amici


jackiee said...

Wow, all of your food looks sooo good! You should send some of your healthy recipes, into this contest I know of that’s making its way around the country. It’s coming to Cleveland on September 25-26th! I noticed your recipe and thought you would be interested. You could get great exposure for your recipes and meet celebrity cooks (Bobby Flay, Sunny Anderson, Sara Moulton, or Cat Cora). All you have to do is go to healthyfoodfight.com to submit one of your healthy recipes. Deadline to sign up for Cleveland is September 8th so hurry! Good luck if you decide to enter, and if not, keep posting! :)

Kathy said...

Thanks jackiee!! I'll check that out :)

Cookerati said...

I've been thinking about zuchini and squash pizza - I usually add them to pasta dishes and other things without roasting so that they stay a little on the crunchy side. I had them in salad the other day and my husband thought they were apples. Your pizza looks really tasty.