Pesto Pizza {with roasted red pepper, tomato and roasted corn}

Pesto Pizza with roasted red pepper, tomato and roasted corn

Pesto Pizza with roasted red pepper, tomato and roasted corn

If I had to choose one food to eat for the rest of my life and cilantro didn’t count, I would probably choose pizza. Goat cheese is right up there too, but I would just put the goat cheese ON the pizza. In fact, I kind of can’t believe I didn’t put it on this pizza. You could though. It would be delicious.

Pesto Pizza with roasted red pepper, tomato and roasted corn

I mean, you really can’t go wrong with carbs and cheese. My two favorite food groups. Add in some homemade ricotta pesto, and you’ve got yourself a ridiculously easy and impressive homemade pizza for any day of the week!

Pesto Pizza with roasted red pepper, tomato and roasted corn

The pesto and the corn are without a doubt my favorite part. I loved the pesto on it’s own, and on a pizza it got EVEN BETTER. Plus, I looooove roasted corn, especially in the summer. I seek it out on menus when I go out to eat, and put it in almost everything I make at home. Sweet and crisp–it takes almost any dish to the next level!

Pesto Pizza with roasted red pepper, tomato and roasted corn

Pesto Pizza {with roasted red pepper, tomato and roasted corn}

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 3-4 servings

Pesto Pizza {with roasted red pepper, tomato and roasted corn}

Ingredients

  • 1 lb whole wheat pizza dough (I used Trader Joe's brand), at room temperature
  • 1-2 tbsp cornmeal
  • 1 batch ricotta pesto
  • 6-8oz freshly shredded part skim mozzarella
  • 1 red bell pepper, roasted and chopped
  • kernels from 1 ear roasted corn
  • 2 roma tomatoes, sliced
  • heavy pinch oregano
  • pinch pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450. If using a pizza stone, leave it in the oven for 30 minutes. Sprinkle cornmeal over a sheet of parchment paper. Place dough on parchment paper and roll into desired shape. Alternately, use your hands to stretch it out into desired shape, then place on parchment paper.Transfer to pizza stone or baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes.
  2. Remove from oven and evenly spread pesto over the pizza. Top with cheese, corn and sliced tomatoes. Sprinkle oregano and pepper on top.
  3. Bake until crust is cooked throughout and cheese is bubbling, about an other 15-20 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes, then slice and serve.
http://arismenu.com/pesto-pizza/

Ricotta Pesto

Ricotta Pesto

Ricotta Pesto

Ever since I was little and my dad used to take me out for Italian food a minimum of two nights per week, I have been obsessed with pesto sauce. Sure, during my teens and early 20’s I was always ordering whatever came with alfredo sauce, but my dad’s a real good sharer, and he would always give me a little plate of his pesto sauce. I considered this the “healthy” sauce because it was green and there was no cream.

Ricotta Pesto

Well, pesto sauce although loaded with healthy fats from the olive oil and pine nuts, is still incredibly calorie dense. Especially if you’re me and you like a side of pasta with your sauce. It’s funny that adding extra cheese actually makes this sauce lower in calories and fat. I can’t argue that it’s necessarily “healthier” than traditional pesto, but it makes me feel a little better about the whole thing. ;)

Ricotta Pesto

Not to mention it is ridiculously good. In fact, I think I even like it more than a traditional pesto. The ricotta cheese makes it thick and creamy–perfect for lasagna, calzones or pizza (coming soon…). It’s great with pasta too, or just as a dipping sauce for veggies. Or, you know, a spoon. It’s ridiculously easy to make and comes together in about 3 minutes flat. Yes, 3 minutes. Of course depending on how quick and nimble your food processor is, but it makes creating a dish with it a total breeze!

Ricotta Pesto

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Yield: approx 1 cup

Ricotta Pesto

Ingredients

  • 2 cups packed fresh basil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup low fat (or part skim) ricotta cheese
  • 1/3 cup olive oil

Instructions

  1. Place basil, garlic, pine nuts, and cheeses in food processor and blend. Slowly, stream in olive oil until everything comes together to form a thick sauce. If sauce is too thick for your taste, stream in a little more olive oil. Store in an airtight container for 3-5 days.

Notes

Lightly adapted from Rachael Ray

http://arismenu.com/ricotta-pesto/

Spaghetti & Spinach Avocado “Pesto”

avacadopasta-15

I used to be a really picky eater. Okay, who am I kidding…I am a really picky eater, but now I’m picky differently. I actually do like almost everything, but there was a time where anything green was immediately vetoed.

These days, I see green things and I think GET IN MY BELLY!! Seriously. I freaking love vegetables. It’s kind of ridiculous. Sometimes Steve calls me a rabbit because I eat so many veggies. There are worse things to love, right?

I actually didn’t intend for this to be a pesto. The original recipe didn’t call it a pesto, but I was surprised that, at least in my weird-o taste buds, it tasted just like delicious, oily, cheesy pesto sauce!

You guys, I freaking love pesto sauce. I also used to think it was healthy. Because it was green and not alfredo sauce. But let’s be real friends, the main ingredient is olive oil. And yes, olive oil is good in moderation, but when you like your noodles like me–sauce with a side of pasta, it adds up real quick.

So I was happy and surprised when this dish tasted just like a creamy pesto sauce! I made it for Steve, my mom, Hank and Charlie, and everyone was a huge fun!

Spaghetti & Spinach Avocado “Pesto”

yield 5 servings

adapted from Perry’s Plate’s Creamy Spinach Avocado Pasta

  • 10 oz box whole grain spaghetti (whole wheat, brown rice, quinoa, etc.)
  • 1/2 tbs light whipped butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6-8 oz baby spinach
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and cubed
  • 1 tbs dried rosemary
  • 1 oz bleu cheese
  • 2 tbs freshly grated parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. Cook pasta according to package instructions. When it’s finished, drain, setting aside 1 cup starchy cooking liquid. Set pasta and reserved liquid aside.
  2. In a large, high rimmed saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add garlic and cook for about 1-2 minutes.
  3. Add salt, pepper, and spinach to the saucepan. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook 4-5 minutes or until the spinach is completely wilted.
  4. Transfer spinach and garlic to a medium mixing bowl. Add yogurt, avocado, dried rosemary, and 1/2 cup reserved pasta water. Stir lightly, then blend using an immersion blender (or transfer to full blender or food processor).
  5. Transfer sauce back to pan, and stir in cheeses. If sauce is too thick, add extra pasta water until is reaches your desired consistency.
  6. Add cooked pasta and toss thoroughly to combine. Serve and top with extra parmesan if desired.