Monday, August 23, 2010

Spaghetti Squash Pizza

It was amazing how much flavor was in this pizza from just a little thyme, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Plus we used our neighbor's fresh lemon thyme which added an extra zest. This makes two pizzas. I thought this was going to be my favorite pizza of the week before the shrimp pizza took first place.

1 spaghetti squash (about 4 pounds)—halved lengthwise, seeded and tough fibers removed
Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling and brushing
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated or ground nutmeg
4 tablespoons coarse cornmeal
2 pizza dough rounds (about 1 pound each)
2 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped, plus leaves to taste
One 15-ounce container whole-milk ricotta cheese
1 lemon, cut into wedges (optional)

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat the oven to 425°. Drizzle the flesh of the squash with olive oil and season with salt, pepper and the nutmeg. Place the squash, cut side down, in a large baking pan and pierce the skin in several places with a fork. Bake for 45 minutes. Turn the squash over and bake until the spaghetti-like strands can be easily removed with a fork, about 10 minutes more. Let cool before scraping the flesh into a bowl.

Arrange 2 racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 475°. Sprinkle 2 large, heavy baking sheets with the cornmeal. Place the pizza dough rounds on top of the cornmeal and shape into 12-by-14-inch rectangles. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and the chopped thyme. Bake until golden and crisp, 15 to 20 minutes.

Spread the ricotta evenly over the pizza crusts and top with the squash. Season with thyme leaves, salt and pepper, then drizzle with olive oil. Bake until just warmed through, about 5 minutes. Cut the pizza into squares and serve with the lemon wedges

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