Week 17: Green is Good

Green is the prime color of the world, and that from which its loveliness arises.

Pedro Calderon de la Barca
Kale pesto pizza with tomatoes, squash, and garlic

When shelter-in-place began we put our names on a waitlist for a local produce delivery service. This week we got our first box of Imperfect Produce. Inspired by our bounty, we decided to make a kale pesto thin crust pizza with squash and tomatoes. The delivery company even offered pre-made pizza crust.

This pesto recipe is super easy to make and full of healthy fats. I used an avocado for added creaminess and reduced the amount of oil and nuts typically found in vegan pesto recipes. We’ve made three pesto recipes so far and this one is by far our favorite.

If you have a nut allergy, you can simply omit the walnuts or add 1/8-1/4 cup additional oil.

Ingredients for Avocado, Kale, Nut pesto

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 2 cups kale
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1/4 cup hemp seeds
  • 1/4 cup walnuts (almonds, pecans, and cashews taste great too)
  • 1/4 cup avocado oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes to taste
kale, avocado, walnut pesto

Instructions

  1. Tear kale off stalks. Wash thoroughly and dry it in a salad spinner or thoroughly dry on a paper towel.
  2. To the base of a food processor, add avocado, garlic, hemp seeds, walnuts, and lemon juice.
  3. Sprinkle in some salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes.
  4. Pulse a few times until the mix starts to combine. Scrape down the sides.
  5. While the food processor is on low speed, drizzle the olive oil in through the top of the machine.
  6. Taste and add additional salt and pepper as desired.

Toppings

One of the great things about pizza is that it is very forgiving. It’s a great way to use whatever veggies you have on hand. I always try to “eat the rainbow” and have a variety of colors on my plate.

For this recipe, I pan fried some chopped onions in a little avocado oil for about 3 minutes, then added garlic, thinly sliced squash, and diced red bell peppers. You can use whatever veggies you prefer. Keep in mind the kale pesto adds a nutty, earthy flavor and the avocado gives it a creaminess.

The photo above shows the actual amount of each vegetable I used. You don’t need a lot of veggies to cover a pizza, though certainly if you are trying to increase your veg intake, pizza is a great way to do so!

baked kale pesto pizza with veggies

Assemble & Bake

Preheat your oven to 425°.

  1. For a crispier crust, while you make the veggie stir fry, put the crust in the oven, directly on the oven rack, for 2 minutes.
  2. Allow the crust to cool a few minutes before slathering with pesto.
  3. Layer with sliced tomatoes seasoned with a dash of salt to bring out additional flavor.
  4. Layer with pan fried veggies.
  5. Your bake time will depend on your crust. For this thin, store bought crust, we baked it an additional 8 minutes and it was perfect. Bake longer for thicker crusts.
Kale pesto pizza with veggies, baked to perfection

We loved this pizza and hope you do too. If you make it, let us know. As the Italians say “alla vostra salute,” to your health. I hope you and your loved ones are doing well both physically and mentally during shelter-in-place and I hope you are eating well too.

Until next week…

Published by 52veganpizzas

We're a couple living in the Bay Area who are committed to a pie a week in 2020. Join us!

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