IT’S FALL BABIES!
Canadian thanksgiving or as I like to call it, “Thanksgiving”, just passed and Halloween decorations are breathing down our throats everywhere we turn. I long to go to a pumpkin patch and pick out a beautiful orange delight but I don’t think my shitty car will make the hour-plus drive.
Luckily you can have pumpkin without hauling ass to the patch. Before I go on, let me make one thing clear; I am not pumpkin spice obsessed. I don’t really care for the pumpkin spice latte but I’m also not going to throw a hissy fit because people love it. There is so much going on in our world that causes outrage and somehow pumpkin became a very polarizing subject. My point being, everyone needs to calm down.
I had purchased a bunch of sage for a pasta dish I made and I wanted to use it in another recipe. Everywhere I looked I saw pumpkin and figured pumpkin and sage make a nice pair. I also had a hankering for pizza, as I usually do. Enter pumpkin pizza. Crazy right? I strutted down to Trader Joe’s and got myself a can of pumpkin purée and the rest is history!
My plan was to make a classic pizza using innovative ingredients. Pumpkin sauce instead of tomato, chicken apple sausage instead of pepperoni, fried sage instead of fresh basil. You get the idea. I was even so bold as to make my own dough! (but next time I’ll buy store bought. My dough was too thick)
My favourite way to make homemade pizza is in a cast iron skillet. You could make this on a pizza pan too but there’s something about the skillet that makes this so easy and delicious. Let’s make it!
Julia’s Pumpkin Pizza
Ball of store bought fresh dough (or homemade if you fancy)
1 cup grated mozzarella
1/2 cup grated parmesan
2 chicken apple sausages (I used some from trader joe’s)
1/3 cup of pumpkin purée (or enough to cover the dough like sauce. make sure it’s unsweetened!)
1 shallot, rough chop
2 clove garlic, pressed
1/2 tsp each nutmeg, ground ginger
8-10 fresh sage leaves
salt and pepper
- Preheat your oven to as hot as it’ll go but DO NOT put it on broil. Slice your sausage into rounds and fry them up in a frying pan with the shallots in a bit of olive oil. About 8 minutes, until the sausage gets some colour.
- In a bowl mix the pumpkin, pressed garlic, nutmeg, ginger, salt and pepper and small glug of olive oil.
- Heat a glug of olive oil in a pan until hot, but not smoking. In batches of 4 or 5, add the sage leaves and cook for 2-3 seconds. They crisp up fast and be careful you don’t burn them! Transfer to paper towel.
- Rub some olive oil over a cast iron pan and heat it over a burner. Roll out your dough and then stretch it in the cast iron pan while it’s hot, making sure to bring the dough up to the edges. Don’t burn your little fingers! Let cook for 2-3 minutes, until dough bubbles a bit.
- Add your pumpkin mix, cheeses and sausage mix.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes until cheese is bubbly and dough is crispy around the edges. Let rest for 5 minutes. Top with crispy sage and enjoy!
Doesn’t this look majestic? It was! If the queen came over I’d give her this. We’d sit cross legged on my couch and watch The Good Wife while devouring pizza and swapping crowns. (I think I have a flower crown somewhere…)
It was such a nice flavour combo. It was like eating a delicious slice of fall! Chicken, apple, pumpkin and sage make a beautiful foursome. The mozz adds that stretchy, chewy, cheesy goodness and the parmesan adds a burst of briny tang. Here’s a few tips to make sure your pizza turns out perfectly.
-buy store bought dough for ease and if you make your own make sure it’s not too thick.
-use grated mozzarella instead of fresh. Fresh mozzarella will make the pizza very watery. (I made this mistake and had to cook the pizza longer and blot it with paper towel. Ugh.). IF you use fresh put it on closer to the end and broil it until it melts and bubbles a bit.
-Make sure your oven is HOT. Can’t stress this enough. If it’s too low the pizza dough won’t crisp up as nicely.
-A little drizzle or olive oil, flaky sea salt and red pepper flakes at the end really amps up the pizza.
-IF you loath pumpkin, try your favourite non-wattery squash instead!
Now make this before fall is over! It’s quite beautiful and you’ll impress your guests. Even if your only guest is you!