Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Roasted Red Cabbage and Apple Pizzas with Carmelized Shallots, Walnuts, and Gruyere

There are some days when you just feel like you need a pizza for dinner...maybe a hard day at work perhaps?  Or just some comfort food in the form of a crispy crust with gooey cheese... today was one of those days for me.  I had some red cabbage and apples on hand, and since they pair so well together as a simple side dish, I thought they might be delicious on a pizza!  I like to try different toppings, and although I have probably tried hundreds of different combinations of fruits and veggies over the years, this one had escaped me.  But what to pair it with?  Some carmelized shallots sounded fabulous, and some nutty melty flavorful buttery gruyere was what I ended up chosing.  Toasted walnuts were a last addition for a textural contrast to all of the soft veggies.  When I pulled the pizza from the oven I knew it would be good...my mouth was watering from the aroma of the melted gruyere and roasted veggies!  The pizza was beautiful with the red cabbage, and it tasted even better!  Like the classic side dish of red cabbage and apples it was tangy, but it had saltiness and richness from the cheese, and with the crunchy walnuts and savory onions, it was heavenly!  Red cabbage and apples are easy to find this time of year, so if you enjoy venturing out of the realm of cheese and meat toppings on a pizza you should try this!

Roasted Red Cabbage and Apple Pizzas with Carmelized Shallots, Walnuts, and Gruyere

Makes 2 10 inch pizzas

1/2 red cabbage, thinly sliced
2 small tart sweet apples, sliced
extra virgin olive oil
6 small shallots, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
balsamic vinegar
2 whole wheat pizza crusts store bought or home-made*
1 tsp dried thyme
sea salt
freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup toasted walnuts
4 oz shredded mozzarella cheese
4 oz shredded Gruyere cheese

A good quality pizza stone is essential to a crispy crust. Place the stone on the highest rack in the oven, then crank up the heat as high as possible at least an hour before baking the pizza (but if you don't have a stone, still use the top rack, but you will need to leave the pizza on a sheet pan to bake). Line 2 sheet pans with foil, and spray with non-stick spray. Toss red cabbage with just enough oil to coat and spread out on one pan, and roast until softened, and starting to brown at edges, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven, drizzle with a little balsamic vinegar and set aside. Spread out apples on other sheet and roast until just softened, about 5 minutes, and set aside.  Meanwhile, in a medium non-stick skillet, heat a little olive oil, on medium heat and add shallots. Cook, stirring occasionally for about 10-15 minutes until browned, softened and caramelly. Add garlic and cook for a minute more, until fragrant, and add a splash of balsamic vinegar. Remove from heat. To assemble pizzas, place one piece of the dough on a piece of parchment paper, spray rolling pin with non-stick spray and roll out as thin as possible (about 10 inches is best) Repeat with other piece of dough using another sheet of parchment. Sprinkle salt and pepper over crust, then thyme, then veggies, walnuts, mozzarella and gruyere. Using a pizza peel, or an upside down sheet pan, carefully slide the dough (keeping it on the parchment) into the oven. Bake for about 3-5 minutes, or until crust is starting to brown and cheese is bubbling. Carefully slide the parchment onto a sheet pan or pizza peel to remove from oven. Let cool a few minutes and serve!

*Amy's Whole Wheat Pizza Crust
Makes 8 10 inch crusts

4 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 Tbsp Salt
2 Pkgs rapid-rise yeast
2 cups warm water

To make the dough, in a large bowl, combine the flour and salt. Make a well in the center, pour in the water and then dissolve the yeast in the water. Gradually stir the flour into the water mixture, until the dough comes together. Turn out onto a floured surface, then knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Oil a large bowl with olive oil, then place dough in bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Place in a warm area, such as near the oven, and let the dough rise until doubled in bulk. When dough has risen, punch down and divide into 8 pieces. You can either freeze the dough in individual portions (just place in ziplock bags and take out the night before you want to use it, then it will be ready to use the next day), or set aside to use right away. If making the recipe above, you will need two crusts.


GreenGirl said...

I like cabbage apple salad but not in million years I would have thought to mix them on a pizza which looks so delicious
well done Amy

Brittany @ Pretty Fit, Pretty Healthy, Pretty Happy said...

This looks absolutely delicious! I can't wait to try it out. :)

Susi said...

Wow, what a unique but delicious looking and sounding pizza topping! Love what you came up with, I will have to try this out the next time I'm making pizzas :o)

Chef Dennis said...

now that is a pizza plus!!! what a great combination of toppings....thats really thinking outside the box! I have seen many different combinations but I can't say I have ever seen apples or walnuts, not to mention cabbage on a pizza, well done my friend!!