Monday, December 12, 2011

the butternut squash pizza

I realized last night as I was going to sleep that this weekend is the first weekend in almost a month that I wasn't out racing.  I had a completely stressful week, so Friday night was an early one - dinner and "Friends" episodes and bed early.  Saturday brought a mixed bag of workouts - I'm still really motivated to swim by my awesome Christmas gear.  We're having a lot of work done on our house right now, so Saturday afternoon was full of hammering and sanding and spackle and paint.  Saturday night was round two of the most brilliant pizza I've made yet.  It goes a little something like this...


Ingredients:
1 onion
1 butternut squash
1 eggplant
1 bag of walnuts
1 container of gorgonzola cheese
some shredded mozzarella
some other stuff (butter, oil, yeast, flour)


This is a bit time-intensive, but I've found that if I do the process in the right order, I'm not standing around waiting for the onions to caramelize while the squash is getting cold and the eggplant is burning.  


1. Preheat the oven to 400º.


2. Drop a big glug of vegetable oil and a scoop of butter into a large saute pan.  Thinly slice the onion and cut into long strings.  Saute onions on very low heat for about an hour (while you do the next bunch of steps), stir often.


3. Microwave a butternut squash, one minute at a time, for about 3-5 minutes.  (This is an Emily trick that makes it easier to peel).  Use a peeler to remove all the skin (rind? outer layer?).  Cut it in half and scoop out the weird seeds and goop.  Chop it into large chunks and put them on a large cookie sheet.  Dribble some olive oil around and top with salt and pepper.  Put it in the oven for about 30 minutes.


4. Start making the dough.  Add 1 cup of warm water to 2 & 1/4 tsp of yeast, stir.  Wait a few minutes, add 1 tsp of sugar and 1 tbsp of vegetable oil, stir.  Let it sit for about 5 minutes or until it gets bubbly and foamy.  Add flour 1/2 cup at a time until dough is elastic and soft.  Cover it and let it rise for about 30 minutes.


5. Poke your butternut squash and stir your onions.


6. Thinly slice the eggplant and lay it out on another cookie sheet.  Dribble it with olive oil, salt & pepper.  The butternut squash is probably done, pull it out and set it aside, and put the eggplant in the oven.


7. Stir onions some more.  You'll know that they are caramelized when they are a soft brown and smell sweet.


8. Press the dough out onto a greased cookie sheet.  Brush with olive oil mixed with salt, pepper, & garlic powder.


9. Put down a very light layer of shredded mozzarella.  Next, layer the eggplant, the onions, the squash, the gorgonzola cheese, the walnuts, and then another light layer of the shredded mozzarella.


10. Cook at 400º for about 15 minutes or until cheese is cracked and bubbly.  Let it cool for about 5 minutes, then slice and serve.  I like to top mine with freshly grated asiago cheese and eat it before anyone can take a picture of it.


We demolished almost the entire thing on Saturday night (4 of us, for the record, not just 2), and I had a piece both pre- and post-long trainer ride on Sunday.  I managed to sucker the tall girl into doing my trainer workout with me, so we were both fueled by squash.  Delicious.
Please notice my sweet trainer setup that can hold both water bottles, a box of Gu, my phone and my pajamas (removed only seconds before beginning my workout).  I might get through all 7 seasons of House this winter.


How was your weekend?  Did you gorge on squash and not race like me?

22 comments:

  1. No, I did actually race and manage to stuff myself with cheeseburgers instead of squash. French fries FTW!

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  2. I'm obsessed with your trainer set up. I simply place the remote on my aero bars - not sure how long the sweat is going to take to ruin it...we will see!

    I'm officially inviting myself over for the next session.

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  3. Your trainer set-up ROCKS!! I may have to attempt to replicate this.

    I'm making this recipe - good God it looks delish!

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  4. WHERE IS THE PHOTO OF BUTTERNUT SQUASH PIZZA?!? I demand a redo.

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  5. You are on fire with the squash these days!
    Very nice trainer set up. My set up involved lugging into the living room so I can watch a movie. Whomp, whomp. Guess I should get a better set up because it gets dark so early now!

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  6. No race for me! Your recipe looks ahmazing.

    Just found your blog after searching for Christmas Caper 10k. I'll be running the 5k - good luck to you and great blog!

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  7. I woke up thinking about this pizza on Sunday morning. Is that wrong? I think it might be wrong.

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  8. Please write a cookbook b/c terms like glug and dribble are not used enough in cook books or on cooking shows.

    Since you are a master at making carmelized onions then make this as it is the best thing I have eatin' in a long time:

    2 egg whites
    carmelized onions
    1 tbsp fig preserve
    1 squirt of whole grain mustard
    a few splashes of hot sauce (tabasco, cholula, garlic chili paste)
    daiya cheese (or any cheese you want really)
    marble rye (the one from Seinfeld specifically)

    1- carmelize the onions and when they get close to being done cook the egg whites.
    2- butter one side of the bread and place in pan and turn on low heat to begin the grilled process
    3- top one side with fig preserve and the other with the mustard
    4- top mustard with cheese
    5- as egg whites begin to firm up splash with hot sauce
    6- when egg whites are done cooking place on top of cheese to help melt
    7- top egg whites with carmelized onions
    8- as bread gets grilled put one slice on top of the other and then press down to create that awesome toasty crunchy outside.
    9- don't eat it so fast but let it setup so that onions and fig get warmed up from the heat and that the cheese is fully melted from the egg whites.

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  9. Maybe I just leave my trainer and bike #3 in your basement for the entire winter. Because why would I trainer ride by myself in my apartment? Exactly.

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  10. I am jealous of your trainer set-up!

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  11. I like the very specific #5 step! That sounds amazing...going to have to try it. Trainer time is upon us!

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  12. If I had known there was pizza and trainer parties I would have stuck around this weekend! Redo this weekend?

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  13. Yum. Eggplant and Butternut squash are two of my favorite things! I will have to try this!

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  14. Sounds delicious. Where is the photo!!!

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  15. I love your Christmas gear! Can't wait to make this pizza!

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  16. You even MAKE the dough??? This is so fancy. I'm not skipping out next time!

    "skin (rind? outer layer?)." I always wonder what I'm supposed to call it. Those crazy butternut squashes perplex me in many ways.

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  17. This looks AMAZING! I can't wait to try it!!

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