The beet greens have such a nice fresh flavor, not bitter at all like some greens can be. The stems have a very mild beet taste. We blanched the leaves & stems in the microwave for a minute to soften them up before putting them on the pizza. (I also do this if I want to freeze them to use later in thinks like soups & stew.) We had planned on pairing it with a little chopped garlic but then noticed that some of the garlic scapes in our garden were ready to harvest so we used one of them instead. Scapes are so perfect in a application like this giving a garlic flavor that isn't sharp or overpowering like raw garlic. Other than that this pizza just has some fresh mozzarella & freshly ground pepper, very simple but really full of flavor.
The scape is the flower stem of a garlic plant. They get cut off to help increase the energy put into growing the bulb & they are mighty tasty! You should start seeing them at farmers markets in our area the next couple of weeks.
For the crust of this pizza I added a little wheat bran. It give a nice flavor, texture & color to the crust as well as some healthiness.
Beet Greens & Garlic Scape Pizza
Wheat Bran Pizza Crust
1 T olive oil plus extra for the bowl
1/2 c warm water
1/2 t dry yeast
1 t kosher salt
1/4 c wheat bran
1 1/4 c all-purpose flour, plus more if needed
Mix the 1 tablespoon of olive oil with the warm water. Stir in the yeast then the salt & wheat bran. Stir in the flour until you can't stir anymore with a spoon. Knead the dough until it is smooth & elastic, about 10 minutes. If the dough is sticky add more flour a little at a time.
Put a little olive oil in the bottom of the bowl. Put the dough in & turn it to coat with the oil. Cover & let sit until double in size, about 2 hours.
Making the Pizza
10 - 12 baby beet green leaves with stems, chopped (you can use chard here instead since they are basically the same thing)
8 oz fresh mozzarella, cubed
1 garlic scape, sliced into small pieces (use a clove of garlic if you can't get scapes)
freshly ground pepper
Preheat oven to 450 F.
Put the beet greens & stems into a plastic bag. Microwave on high for 1 minute to blanch. Set aside
Lightly oil a baking sheet. Spread the dough out into a rectangle about 12" x 18" on the prepared sheet. Scatter the cheese cubes around the dough. Sprinkle the garlic scapes & blanched beet greens over the cheese. Season with pepper. Bake for 13 -15 minutes until the cheese is melted & bubbly & the golden brown.
Makes 1 pizza
We are really enjoying putting all sorts of different seasonal ingredients on our pizzas lately, ramps, garlic scapes, beet greens...what is your favorite, perhaps a little unusual, pizza topping?
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