Friday, September 17, 2010

Grilled Zucchini Pizza with Roasted Red Peppers and Goat Cheese

Hi everyone!  Here's yet another recipe that involves the grill.  I cannot say enough about grilling or roasting veggies.  They just taste so much better; all the natural sugars caramelize, and you get a hint of smokey flavor, which my hubby loves.  I used to steam all our fresh vegetables until I started roasting our from-the-garden green beans, and wow...they were such a hit.  I haven't used our vegetable steamer in probably 2 years.  It's sitting in my closet, waiting for it's chance to be donated to Goodwill. 

Anyone want it?  Just kidding. 

So, if you are not into zucchini, substitute yellow squash, bell peppers, whatever you fancy.  Goat cheese not your thing?  Toss on some mozzarella or fontina...I'll never know.  As you'll see, this recipe is figure-friendly, thanks to a light hand on the cheese, and a homemade, whole wheat crust.  And of course, you can make plain cheese pizza for all the picky eaters in your house (I don't have any of those you know ;-).

Grilled Zucchini Pizza with Roasted Red Peppers and Goat Cheese

1 recipe homemade whole wheat pizza dough or store bought dough
2 small or one medium zucchini, cut in half, and sliced lengthwise into 1/4 inch slices
Zest and juice from one lemon
1 teaspoon lemon dill seasoning blend
salt and black pepper
Olive oil for drizzling
1/2 cup prepared pizza sauce
1 roasted red pepper, thinly sliced
3 ounces fresh, crumbled goat cheese
1 teaspoon dried basil or oregano

Heat your outdoor grill or indoor grill pan over medium heat.  I used my indoor grill pan, and wanted to make sure the zucchini didn't stick, so I threw everything into a bag--the zucchini, lemon juice and zest, the lemon-dill seasoning and the olive oil.  Give it all a good shake to distribute the olive oil and seasonings. 

Grill for 3-5 minutes on both sides until the zucchini is lightly marked and tender,but not falling apart.  Set aside.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Divide your pizza dough into 8 equal pieces.  (I decided to make slightly larger pizzas this time, and made 6 individual pizzas instead of 8.  At this point, if you don't need all the dough, you may freeze some for later or use it right away). 

I started off making 4 cheese pizzas for the kids.  Anytime we have pizza in our house, it's inhaled!  Just stretch the dough out, spread with pizza sauce, cheese, and a sprinkling of dried basil or oregano.  Pretty easy, right?  Bake at 400 degrees for 12-14 minutes or until the crust is golden brown. 

Now let's make the pizzas for the grown-up taste buds.  Take 2 portions of dough and gently spread it out into a round shape, about 8 inches across.  Placed on a lightly greased baking sheet (or use a silpat mat if you have one).  

 Drizzle with a tiny bit of olive oil and spread on some of the pizza sauce.  Lay on about 6 slices of the zucchini--you might have to trim them a bit so they'll fit on the dough.   Next up...the roasted red pepper.  I cheated and bought a jar of roasted red peppers. ;-).  But sometimes a jar is cheaper than buying them fresh.  6-8 slices of pepper ought to do it. 

Place little crumbles of goat cheese, all around...don't go too crazy with it...

And sprinkle with the dried basil.  I used Penzey's Pasta Sprinkle...I just love this stuff.  But I know not everyone has it, or can get it.  Dried basil is a fine substitute. ;-)

This just begged for a close-up.  Divine veggie goodness...I can't wait to eat you up!

Now your little pizza is ready for the oven.  Bake at 400 degrees for 12-14 minutes, rotating once halfway through the baking time.  The crust should be a light golden brown, and the goat cheese will be very soft. 

It's that pretty?  A perfect way to eat your veggies and have your pizza too! 

Let stand for about 5 minutes, cut into 4 slices, and serve.

I didn't get a pic of the finished cheese pizzas, sorry.  David and I were too busy devoring our dinner, and the kids of course were busy eating too.  I didn't want to snatch their plate away to try and get a picture!

Hope you are able to get out there and grill a little more.  It's still so hot here...we'll surely be able to cook outside for a few more weeks (many a couple of months!). 

God bless your table tonight!

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