Pizzas

Butternut, Cranberry, and Ricotta Pizza

We had a version of this pizza at Otto Pizza in Portland, Maine and I instantly fell in love. I thought the flavors were so unique for pizza toppings and would make a great dish during the holiday season. I made it last night for dinner but changed it up from the pizza we ate a few years ago. Instead of a ricotta and mozzarella base (mostly cheesy, less other toppings) I have turned the butternut squash into the “sauce” on the pizza. The creamy squash is mashed with garlic for a rich and savory base. Sweet cranberries complement the savory and salty ricotta salata creates the perfect balance. Make it as a side dish for dinner as the weather turns cold or as an appetizer for the holidays.

Makes: 6 servings

Prep Time: 20 minutes    Baking Time: 10 minutes     Total Time: 30 minutes

1 ball of whole wheat pizza dough (store bought see recipe here)
12 oz frozen and cubed butternut squash, thawed
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 large shallot, thinly sliced
1 tsp thyme, minced
1/2 cup packed cranberries, rehydrated*
4 oz grated ricotta salata
1 tbs olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • Preheat the oven to 415 degrees.
  • Roll the pizza into a large circle or into a 9 x 13 inch rectangle (depending on the shape of your pan).
  • Put a dusting of flour on a cookie sheet and gently lay the dough on top. Set aside.
  • Heat a medium-sized saute pan with a drizzle of olive oil. Cook the garlic, shallot, squash and thyme for about 4 minutes, or until the squash resembles a mashed potato consistency. Remove from the heat a cool just a bit.
  • Use a spatula to gently spread the butternut squash mix across the pizza dough. Season with a little bit of salt and a good amount of pepper.
  • Top with the ricotta and cranberries. Drizzle with the 1 tbs olive oil.
  • Bake in the oven for 12 minutes for a chewy crust, 15 minutes for a crispy crust.
  • Let cool for just a minute, top with parsley, slice and serve.
* What is a rehydrated cranberry? Heat about 1 cup of water to a boil and pour over the cranberries. Let the cranberries soak up the water to plump up and drain completely.
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