Recipe: Balsamic Red Onion, Roasted Garlic & Brussels Sprouts Pizza
People either love or hate Brussels sprouts, but Ed and I are firmly in the "love" camp. It's funny how Brussels have become one of my favorite veggies, as I was never fed them growing up. Now, though, I eat them at least two or three times a month. These little buds, so often misunderstood, hold the power of versatility; you can roast them with sriracha & honey or with balsamic vinegar, boil them in a tasty pot pie, or shave them as a base for a healthy salad. Or, as you'll see here, you can add them to pizza!
And a pungent pizza it is, for sure. You've got the Brussels sprouts—which are members of the cabbage family, perhaps quite obviously—as well as super strong balsamic-glazed red onions and a potent base of roasted garlic and olive oil. This pizza is honestly incredibly easy to put together and super satisfying, too; you could even prepare the veggies/garlic base a day before if you want. I think it would also be great with a pesto base if you want to try that out.
- 1/2 lb. Brussels sprouts
- 2 medium red onions, sliced
- Pizza crust
- Olive oil
- Balsamic vinegar
- Red pepper flakes
- Black pepper
- Six whole garlic cloves
- 1 T. pine nuts
- Low-fat ricotta cheese
- One or two other cheeses, like mozzarella or Parmesan
This pizza crust was purchased at Uptown Grocery in OKC. Each whole crust is only 300 calories and contains 3g fat, 60g carbs, 3g sugar and 12g protein. Highly recommend!
1) Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2) Select 1/3 of the Brussels sprouts and rinse. Slice off the stem end, remove the outer leaves of the sprouts and discard. Pluck the newly exposed leaves from the clean sprouts, trimming the stem ends when necessary until you’ve been able to remove all the leaves. Add the clean leaves to a bowl.
3) Rinse, de-stem and remove the outer leaves from the remaining sprouts. Slice thinly, or use a mandolin to shave them. Add the shavings to the same bowl as the leaves. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss and massage the leaves/shavings with your hands until they’re fully coated. Transfer to a pan over high heat and flash fry until the sprouts are slightly softened.
4) Slice the red onions. Add to a large skillet over medium heat and sauté with a tablespoon of olive oil, a pinch of red pepper flakes and a bit of salt. Stir to coat, then cover the skillet and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in 1/4 c. balsamic vinegar, and cook for a few more minutes until the vinegar has been mostly absorbed.
5) In a separate pan, add about 1/4 c. olive oil and the peeled garlic cloves. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the cloves become soft, aromatic and slightly browned. Pour all contents of the pan into a food processor and add the pine nuts. Puree until mostly smooth, adding in more olive oil if necessary.
6) Top the dough with an even layer of the garlic purée, then add onions and dollops of ricotta cheese. Sprinkle on the Brussels sprouts, then finish with a layer of mozzarella and/or Parmesan cheese.
7) Transfer to the oven and bake for 12-14 minutes until crispy and slightly browned. With the crust I used, we placed the the pizzas directly on the oven rack. I’d suggest doing one pizza at a time or switching them halfway through, as the pizza that was on the bottom rack of our oven became slightly burned.
8) Cool, slice and serve! Top with additional black pepper or red pepper flakes if desired.