If begging were an Olympic event my young daughter would have more gold medals than Michael Phelps.
The day before Halloween she saw a jack-o’-lantern shaped pizza complete with a pepperoni mouth, olive eyes and a mozzarella cheese nose. Once she saw it she refused to leave the store without it. I told her we could make the same pie at home for half the price. No dice. The entire time we were in the store she badgered, begged and pleaded for the pizza.
Long story short, we left without the pizza. However, I did promise her that we would make the jack-o’-lantern pizza later this week—-“even though it’s after Halloween.” After all, the end of Halloween doesn’t mean the end of pumpkin season.
You can still find fresh pumpkins in the grocery store (for a bargain, in most cases). If you see some, I would highly recommend you pick one up and use it in the following amazingly delicious recipe for Savory Pumpkin Pizza:
SAVORY PUMPKIN PIZZA
1 19 oz. pre-made dough ball
1 medium size pumpkin
1 cup roasted yellow onions
1 cup oven roasted Roma tomatoes (about 4 tomatoes)
1/4 cup fresh chopped basil
2 tablespoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon brown sugar
5 oz. marinara sauce
1 1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
Nutmeg for garnish
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Press one dough ball into a round 15-inch circle. With a fork, poke several holes in the dough to relieve air pockets.
Cut one medium-sized pumpkin in half and remove all seeds and guts. Cut the skin off the pumpkin and cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Blanch the pumpkin cubes in boiling water for 7 minutes. Remove the cubes from the water and place into an ice batch until cool. Place the cubes into a small bowl. Season the cubes with salt, pepper, crushed red pepper, and brown sugar. Then mix with 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar.
Slice a yellow onion into 1” strips. Toss in oil, salt and pepper. Roast the onions in oven until transparent, with slight signs of browning.
Cut four Roma tomatoes in half. Use a spoon to clean out the insides. Place tomatoes onto a pan and sprinkle with salt, pepper, sugar, and brown sugar. Roast tomatoes in oven until they are soft. Cut the tomatoes into 1/2-inch cubes.
Spread 1 heaping cup of marinara sauce over the pizza dough to form a 1/2-inch rim for the crust. Place 1 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese over the marinara. Spread the roasted onions and tomatoes over the pumpkin. Top with remaining 1/2 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese.
Place pizza in oven and cook until cheese is melted and dough begins to brown.
Remove and cut into slices.
For Garnish: Take a very small amount of nutmeg and dust over the entire pizza. Then, evenly sprinkle the fresh basil over the pizza before serving.