This recipe is inspired by Picco, a lovely restaurant located in Boston’s South End. While everything on the menu is top notch, my absolute favorite thing to order is the pizza covered in butternut squash, brussels sprouts, and a generous amount of fontina cheese.
For my rendition of this recipe, I decided to skip the red sauce and start with a foundation of white pizza. I didn’t have any brussels sprouts on hand, so I replaced them with a few handfuls of fresh spinach. I also added a few caramelized onions, since I love their sweet and savory flavor (hint: if you’re in a rush, add some balsamic vinegar to the onions near the end of cooking. This creates a similar flavor, but takes about half the time!).
Winter Squash and Spinach Pizza Recipe
- Pizza dough (I suggest this recipe, but you can also buy some at your local grocery store)
- mozzarella cheese, grated
- ricotta cheese
- a few handfuls of spinach
- 1/2 butternut squash, cubed
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 medium onion
- olive oil
- Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Toss the cubes of butternut squash in olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and place on a prepared baking sheet. Roast for 20-30 minutes, testing for doneness with a fork. Don’t overcook, since the butternut squash will roast for 10 minutes more on top of the pizza.
- Cut the onion in half and slice into thin half moons. Heat oil in a small skillet on low and add onions. Cook for about 20 minutes, or until onions are evenly golden brown and caramelized.
- In the meantime, spread cornmeal out onto a large baking pan. Stretch the pizza dough so that it is uniformly thin and fits nicely into the baking pan. Rub stretched dough with a light layer of olive oil.
Assemble the Pizza:
- Increase oven temperature to 450 degrees.
- Spread mozzarella cheese evenly over the pizza dough. Using a medium sized spoon, scoop ricotta out of the container and drop onto the pizza. Continue this process 10-15 more times, until pizza is evenly covered. Sprinkle spinach over the entire pizza. Use a few handfuls, keeping in mind that the spinach will shrink during cooking.
- Top pizza with minced garlic, caramelized onions, and cooked butternut squash cubes. Place in the hot oven and cook for 10-12 minutes, or until pizza is evenly browned. Remove and let cool before serving.