Asparagus and Ricotta Pizza 4.000

Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post

Nourish Apr 20, 2016

This pizza says "primavera" simply and elegantly, topped with creamy, lemon-spiked ricotta cheese, roasted asparagus, Parmesan cheese and fresh basil. The asparagus gets a head start roasting in the oven, then you use the same (now, conveniently preheated) baking sheet to build and cook the pizza on, for a meal that is at once light, fresh and satisfying.


Servings:
4

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Tested size: 4 servings

Ingredients
  • 12 asparagus spears
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon cornmeal, for the work surface
  • 12 ounces whole-wheat pizza dough, defrosted if frozen
  • 3/4 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 ounce Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, freshly grated (1/2 packed cup)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 large or 12 small basil leaves

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Trim any woody ends from the asparagus. Place the spears on a baking sheet, drizzle with the oil and toss to coat, then sprinkle with the salt. Roast for about 6 minutes, or until the asparagus is just tender. Transfer to a cutting board to cool slightly, then cut the asparagus into 3/4-inch or 1-inch pieces. Reserve the baking sheet, with the oil still on it, to use for the pizza. Increase the oven temperature to 500 degrees.

Sprinkle a work surface with the cornmeal and use a rolling pin and/or your hands to stretch the dough into a 12-inch round. Transfer the dough to the baking sheet that you used to roast the asparagus.

Stir together the ricotta and the lemon zest in a medium bowl, then use the back of a spoon to smear that mixture over the dough, leaving a 1-inch border for the crust. Arrange the asparagus on top, sprinkle with the Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and a few turns of black pepper. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or just until the cheese is melted and browning, the asparagus is softened and the crust is browned.

While the pizza is in the oven, stack the basil leaves, roll them, then cut them crosswise into very thin ribbons (chiffonade).

Garnish the just-baked pizza with basil, then cut into 8 wedges. Serve hot.

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Recipe Source

From nutritionist and cookbook author Ellie Krieger.

Tested by Sandhya Babu.

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