I love pizza night at home, and I'm always on the lookout for creative ways to pile on the greens. When I buy kale, I always find myself with such a large bunch on hand, so this recipe makes use of it in two ways: in a delicious pesto as the base and then in crispy bits on top. Feel free to add any other toppings you like, and if you don't want to make your own dough, ask your local pizzeria -- they'll usually sell you some! —Posie (Harwood) Brien
one medium pizza
For the dough
instant or active dry yeast
1 1/4 cups
warm water, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons
whole wheat flour
all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
For the topping
kale, torn into pieces (1 large bunch of kale)
pine nuts (you can substitute almonds or walnuts)
grated Parmesan cheese
fresh mozzarella, torn into pieces
red pepper flakes
In This Recipe
To make the dough, combine the yeast with 1/4 cup of the water and the sugar in a large bowl. Stir to dissolve the yeast and let sit until it foams a bit, about 5 minutes.
Add the remaining 1 cup warm water to the yeast, then stir in salt, olive oil, and both flours Stir until you have a soft dough, and if it feels way too sticky, add a bit more flour, a few tablespoons as a time, until the dough is smooth and soft but not wet.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it for a few minutes (you can also do this in a stand mixer with the dough hook). You want the dough to be smooth and elastic on the surface, so if it looks "rough", keep kneading until smooth. Lightly grease a large bowl, place the dough in it, and cover it with plastic wrap or a damp tea towel. Let rise for about 1 hour, until almost doubled in size.
When the dough has risen, divide it into two even pieces. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or until ready to use. This helps develop the flavor of the dough and relaxes the dough so it's easier to stretch, but if you're in a rush, you can use it right away. (The dough will keep for up to 3 days so you can do this part ahead!)
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Take one piece of dough and stretch/roll it out til it's about 1/2" thick. Transfer to a lightly greased baking sheet (if you're using a pizza stone, place it in the oven to heat up as the oven preheats and prep your pizza on a piece of parchment paper).
To make the pesto: Combine 3 cups of packed kale with the pine nuts, Parmesan, nutritional yeast, garlic, salt, and olive oil in a food processor and pulse until you have a smooth paste.
Spread the pesto onto your rolled-out pizza dough, leaving some room around the edges.
Sprinkle the remaining kale over the top of the pesto, along with the mozzarella, and red pepper flakes.
Bake for about 20 min until the edges are golden and the cheese bubbles.