Time to step a little outside the box today.
With spiced up Moroccan Pizza!
Trust me, I was scared.
Like very scared.
But thankfully it ended good!
Love. When. That. Happens.
This was my first venture into Moroccan cooking and even though I can’t honestly sit and tell you that this is an authentic Moroccan recipe, I can tell you it is dang good.
And my crazy brother Brendan would most likely tell you it is the best pizza he has ever had, but you can’t fully trust is opinion because like I said, he is totally crazy.
He does like good food though.
And apparently he really loves Moroccan. I guess there are a few places in the Portland, OR and Tahoe, CA area with some killer Moroccan food.
The only reason I am thinking this might not be all that authentic of a Moroccan recipe is because of all the cheese. All the warm ooey gooey fresh mozzarella AND feta cheese.
You can’t do pizza, not matter what ethic background it has, without cheese.
You just can’t.
And don’t try and tell me otherwise, because I’ll most likely argue it to the grave.
Now, let’s talk about the pesto.
Yeah, I am making you turn your ovens on. Sorry, but not really because it is totally worth it. Plus, I have now done two meal in a row that require no oven. This California Chicken and Rice Bowl and the Caribbean Jerk Salmon Tostadas (fine, you have to use the broiler for like a millisecond. I am not counting that.)
So what makes up Moroccan pesto (err…what I am calling Moroccan pesto)? Roasted garlic, cilantro, parsley and mint. It’s like a flavor bomb and it’s awesome. If you have any leftover you can eat it with naan (so good, just made this), pita bread, toast, spread it on sandwiches and on everything in between. It’s so crazy good.
I love roasted garlic and cilantro.
Oh and also mint. Ever since this Mint Pesto Pasta I have been looking for more savory ways to use mint. Any good ideas?
Other than the pesto this pizza also has tons of fresh late summer veggies.
Ah wait, late summer?? When and how did that happen? Please slow down time, please?
Back to the pizza. This thing is loaded with zucchini, red peppers and artichokes. It is kind of perfect for this time of year. So fresh, light and full of flavor!
Oh and the cashews? Well, those I have been adding to just about everything lately. Trust me, you’ll see soon.
Moroccan Roasted Garlic Pesto and Cashew Pizza
- Yields: Dough recipe makes 2 (12 inch) pizzas, Pesto and topping for 1 pizza
- Preparation time: 30 minutes
- Cook time: 1 hour
- Total time: 1 hour 30 minutes
- 1 pound [of your favorite pizza dough| http://www.halfbakedharvest.com/thai-pizza/]
- Moroccan Roasted Garlic Pesto
- 1 small head of garlic
- 1 cup fresh cilantro, torn
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, torn
- 1/4 cup fresh mint, torn
- 1/2 a jalapeno, seeded and chopped
- 2 tablespoon chashews or pistachios
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoon feta cheese, crumbled
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 small Zucchini, sliced into thin rounds (or half of a large)
- 1 roasted red pepper, sliced thin strips (or half of a large)
- 1 (4 ounce) jar marinated artichokes
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (use less for less heat)
- 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/3 cup kalamata olives (or a mix of green + kalamata)
- 1 cup fresh mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbed
- 1/4 cup roasted chashews
Prepare the [dough | http://www.halfbakedharvest.com/thai-pizza/] 1 1/2 to 2 hours ahead of time. While the dough rises roast the garlic and make the pesto.
Preheat oven to 375. Chop off the top portion of the garlic head to reveal cloves. Peel any excess paper/skin off from the bulb of garlic. Pour about a teaspoon of olive oil on top the garlic cloves and cover with foil and roast in a baking dish for 45 minutes, or until golden brown and soft. Allow to cool and then squeeze garlic out of the paper skin into a small bowl, set aside.
Place the cilantro, parsley, mint, jalapeño, garlic and cashews in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times until well chopped. Stream in the olive oil and pulse until combined. Add the feta and pulse a few more times or until combined.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
In a large bowl add the zucchini, pepper and drained artichokes. Add 1 teaspoon olive oil, the smoked paprika, cumin, cayenne, cinnamon, turmeric, and a pinch of pepper. Toss really well making sure the spices are evenly coating the veggies and there are no clumps. Set aside.
Once the pizza dough is ready to go, divide the dough in half. Place half the dough aside for another use (or make 2 pizzas) or freeze for later. With the remaining dough roll/press into one 10 to 12 inch round circle or rectangle (you may go smaller or larger depending on how thick you want your crust). Top with as much of the pesto as desired and then sprinkle on the mozzarella cheese. Add the veggies in an even layer. Then sprinkle on the olives and half the feta cheese.
Bake at 375 degrees for 30 - 35 minutes or until your desired doneness. You may also cook this pizza on a pizza stone or using the [skillet method | http://www.halfbakedharvest.com/green-olive-pesto-pizza-with-roasted-red-peppers-and-feta-stuffed-crust/], but I recommend cooking the veggies before hand.
Let the pizza sit five minutes and then sprinkle with the roasted cashews and the remaining feta. Cut and serve!
I promise I’ll be back to norm. I am thinking chocolate?? I’ll gladly take suggestions though??