We are still working our way through the seasonal surplus of delicious zucchini, not that I’m complaining! I adore this abundant and healthy summertime vegetable and I’m always looking for interesting ways to cook with it. Mostly in the warmer months it ends up threaded onto kebabs and grilled on the barbecue, though I also love it stuffed and roasted or even made into a pickle or chutney. It’s even brilliant grated and used as a topping for one of my favourite vegetarian dishes: Zucchini and Feta Pizza.
This delicious pizza topping idea comes from the talented New Zealand cook and national treasure Annabel Langbein. It is so simple, and a terrific alternative to tomato sauce topped pizzas. The zucchini is grated and all the juice squeezed out – make sure to save it for watering the plants or adding to green smoothies! It’s then fried up with garlic, herbs and lemon juice. Spread over my quick and easy homemade pizza dough and topped with sweet potato, tangy feta, juicy cherry tomatoes, crunchy seeds and fresh herbs, it is a vegetarian flavour sensation.
My easy pizza dough comes together in around 5 minutes and is then left to rise in the fridge. That means you can quickly make the dough up in the morning, whack it in the fridge, and it’s all good to go when you get home from work. It’s a great quick and easy weeknight dinner, and a good recipe to have up your sleeve if a vegetarian friend is coming over for dinner.
What’s your favourite unusual pizza topping? Let me know in the comments below. Happy cooking, xJ
Let me know if you try this recipe in the comments below, or using the hashtag #daysofjay on Instagram. Happy cooking!
for the pizza dough:
- 7g sachet dried yeast or 21g fresh yeast
- 250g flour
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp fine semolina
for the topping:
- 4 medium zucchini
- 1 small sweet potato
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 3 spring onions, sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp mild chilli flakes
- 1 lemon, juice and finely grated zest
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 125g feta, crumbled
- 125g cherry tomatoes, halved
- 3 Tbsp mixed seeds, pumpkin, sunflower, pine nuts etc
- small bunch fresh mint
- small bunch fresh basil
To make the pizza dough stir the yeast into 150ml of warm water. Set aside for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, stir together the flour, sugar and salt in a medium-sized bowl. After 5 minutes stir the yeast mixture and add to the bowl along with the olive oil.
Use a spoon to stir the mixture until the dough begins to come together. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5 minutes until the dough is smooth. Shape into a ball, return to the bowl, drizzle over the oil and cover with clingfilm. Refrigerate for at least an hour.
When you are ready to make the pizza, heat the oven to 220°C / 450°F / Gas 8. Lightly dust the benchtop with flour, then roll out the dough to the size of an oven tray, dusting with flour as necessary to stop it sticking. Sprinkle an oven tray with the semolina, then carefully transfer the dough to the prepared tray.
Grate the zucchini, then place in a mesh bag or clean cloth (I use the type of reusable mesh bag available for fruit and veg at the supermarket) and squeeze tightly to extract as much juice as possible. If you squeeze the zucchini over a jug or bowl you can use the juice to water your pot plants! Peel the sweet potato, then use the peeler to slice the sweet potato into thin ribbons.
Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large frying pan, then gently cook the spring onions, garlic, oregano and chilli flakes for 3 minutes. Add the zucchini, lemon juice, zest and salt and continue to cook for a further 3 minutes until the zucchini has softened and reduced. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for a minute or two.
Spread the zucchini mixture evenly over the prepared dough. Scatter over the sweet potato, feta, tomatoes and seeds. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes until crisp.
Before serving, tear over a handful of fresh mint and basil leaves and drizzle with the remaining oil.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 3 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 809Total Fat: 41gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 27gCholesterol: 37mgSodium: 1969mgCarbohydrates: 91gFiber: 10gSugar: 12gProtein: 25g
Nutrition information is calculated automatically and isn’t always accurate.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Can I make this pizza vegan?
Yes! You just need to swap out the feta for a vegan alternative.
What sort of flour should I use to make this pizza?
I have made this pizza with all sorts of different flours, but I usually just use plain flour. If when mixing your dough it seems unusually wet or dry, add a little more flour or water until it is smooth and easy to handle.
Can I make zucchini and feta pizza in advance?
You can make the dough up to 24 hours beforehand as long as it is well covered and in the fridge. The zucchini topping can also be made in advance, make sure you store it well covered in the fridge.