Pizza with olive oil, herbs, summer squash, fennel, onion, apple, ricotta, and mozzarella.
It’s springtime in central Texas, and this year it just won’t stop raining! This incredible pizza is perfect for a stormy night in with a group of friends and a few bottles of crisp white wine. It features layers of flavor with a spotlight on a few of my favorite spring crops: fennel, patty pan squash, and tons of herbs. Caramelizing the fennel and onion yields a golden jammy spread with a faint hint of licorice. Squash roasted with herbs adds depth, and slivers of red apple bring a surprising crunch and sweetness. Top it all off with mozzarella, a few dabs of ricotta, and a sprinkle of sea salt and I swear you won’t even notice the floodwaters rising!
- 1 prepared pizza crust
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 cup fresh herbs (I used sage, oregano, thyme, parsley, and rosemary), minced
- 1 white onion, sliced thinly into rings
- 1 large bulb fennel, sliced thinly into rings
- 4 medium patty pan squash, sliced thinly
- 1 small red apple, julienned
- 1 cup mozzarella, chopped or shredded
- 1/2 cup ricotta
- 1 tsp sea salt
- Mix minced herbs with 1/2 cup olive oil and let infuse for as long as possible.
- About an hour before dinner time, preheat your oven to 450°F.
- Coat a large pan with 1 Tbsp oil and warm on low heat, then add sliced onion and fennel. Let caramelize, stirring occasionally. This takes a long time but is so worth it! Keeping the heat low is essential to the process, so don’t try to rush it. Keep your eye on the prize and go for the gold.
- Toss sliced squash with 1/4 cup of infused oil and herbs, sprinkle with 1/2 tsp sea salt, then place in a single layer on a baking sheet.
- Bake squash for 20 minutes, or until brown around the edges. Remove from oven, then kick your oven temp up to 500°F.
- While waiting for squash, fennel, and onion to be ready, drink a glass of wine (or two) and watch the rain pour down.
- Spread a generous layer of minced herbs across your prepped crust, then caramelized fennel and onion, roasted squash, and mozzarella, followed by raw julienned apple and a few dots of ricotta. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 tsp of sea salt over the top and bake on a pizza stone or baking sheet for 15 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
- Remove from oven, let cool for a minute, cut, eat, share, enjoy!