We love playing around with funky, seasonal ingredients. On our nightly walks home, we are fortunate to pass enticing Italian bakeries and markets that feed our passion. Last night, we stopped into Bova’s Bakery, grabbed a fresh ball of pizza dough, and challenged ourselves to create a non-traditional kind of flatbread using only what we had in our kitchen.
We decided to scrap the classic tomato-base pizza and go for a more rustic flatbread. We grabbed a sweet potato, a staple in our kitchen, and commonly roasted as a side or pureed into a soup, and sliced it up. Along with the sweet slices, we chopped some earthy Swiss chard further enhanced with sauteed garlic, sliced half of a biting red onion, grabbed some rich ricotta and salty Parmigiano Reggiano from our refrigerator, and chopped up the unassuming star-fresh sage leaves. When cooked at such a high temperature, the delicate sage leaves became incredibly crispy and pungent and added a great punch to the flatbread. The mix of vibrant, contrasting colors and flavors created an incredible vegetarian entree.
Sweet Potato, Swiss Chard, Ricotta and Sage Flatbread
1 large sweet potato, cut into 1/8-inch thick rounds
1 clove minced garlic
1 lb bunch Swiss chard, stems removed (save them for another time!) and chopped
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1 lb pizza dough, at room temperature
1/2 c ricotta cheese
1/4 c Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
2 T chopped fresh sage
salt and pepper throughout
Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
Add the sweet potato slices to a medium pot of salted water and bring to a boil. Cook for 3-5 minutes, until the sweet potatoes are not fully cooked but al dente. Remove the sweet potatoes to a paper towel and pat dry.
In a large skillet, heat 1 T EVOO over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and sautee for 2 minutes. Add the Swiss chard leaves, salt and pepper sautee, about 5 minutes until wilted. If need be, add a few spoonfuls of hot water to speed up the wilting. Remove from heat and set aside.
Heat another 1 T EVOO in the same skillet over medium heat. Add the sliced red onion, salt and pepper, and sautee for 3-5 minutes until softened. Remove from heat and set aside.
On a floured surface, roll out the pizza dough with a floured rolling pin from the center outward. Feel free to make whatever 1/4-inch thick freeform shape you would like. Brush a baking sheet with EVOO (or feel free to use a pizza stone if you have one). Transfer the flattened dough to the oiled baking pan and brush the surface with 1 T EVOO. Scatter dollops of the ricotta atop the surface and spread with a spatula, leaving a 1-inch border for the crust. Evenly sprinkle the Parmigiano Reggiano cheese on top. Cover the cheeses with the sliced sweet potatoes, swiss chard, and sauteed red onions. Sprinkle with the chopped sage leaves, salt, pepper and a drizzle of EVOO. Bake for about 12-15 minutes, or until the crust is golden. Serves 4.
We’re always adventurous when it comes to pizza toppings, and encourage you to experiment, too!