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Caramelized Onion and Roasted Veggie Pizza

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Last week I developed a sudden aversion to meat. I couldn’t figure out why the turkey on my sandwich looked so unappetizing or how come a juicy burger was such a turn-off. While I’m not a hard carnivore, I’ve never disliked meat. At first I blamed the warm weather. I thought the heat was causing me to crave lighter, healthier foods. But that seemed silly. And then it hit me. I’ve spent the majority of the last month in an operating room. Around exposed muscle, bone, and tissue. Inhaling the fumes of burning flesh. (Pleasant images, I know.) Hmmm. I’m guessing there’s a correlation here.

Luckily, Dustin has been gracious about my change in appetite and hasn’t complained too much that I’m currently leaning vegetarian. (He confessed to similar feelings after spending a semester of anatomy in the cadaver lab.) So we’re clear- I’m not giving up on meat. I just need a break. (Which would do us all some good on occasion.) Over the weekend I was craving pizza and remembered this favorite recipe I first posted two years ago. Oven-roasted vegetables and sweet caramelized onions are piled high on my homemade pizza dough and smothered in mozzarella and fontina. This time I added mushrooms to the veggie mix. There’s no rule about what to include. All vegetables are welcome here.

6/11/09: I’m especially fond of this pizza because I developed it on my own. I take my inspirations from everywhere, but for the most part, this one came from within! I fall more and more in love with my pizza dough recipe every time I make it, which is very often. I enjoyed this pizza so much that I made it twice in one week (and we know I rarely repeat the same recipe twice within a year)!I’m all about incorporating more vegetables into my diet, and what better way to enjoy them than atop a pizza?! You can roast whatever vegetables you prefer, but I definitely recommend including peppers and squash. The caramelized onions are essential. If you’ve never tried caramelized onions, you are in for a treat. Literally. They are sweet and aromatic and I can’t stop myself from eating them right out of the pan! The Fontina is another required ingredient. I can’t quite describe how it tastes- it just makes all the difference! Basically, don’t make any substitutions or you won’t get the same result. And then I can’t be blamed if your pizza is sub-par.

Another note: I never actually measure how much cheese ends up on my pizza. Just judge for yourself how much is enough. Shoot for a ratio of about half Fontina to half mozzarella.

Caramelized Onion and Roasted Veggie Pizza

INGREDIENTS

1 recipe pizza dough
roasted veggies
2 large yellow onions, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 1/2 cups Fontina cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cups Mozzarella cheese, shredded

DIRECTIONS

1. Prepare pizza dough according to directions. While pizza dough is rising, roast veggies according to directions (or you can use previously roasted vegetables that have been kept in the refrigerator).

2. In a large pan heat 1 Tbsp. of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and saute, stirring occasionally, until caramelized (they will reach a deep golden brown), 25-40 minutes.

3. Place pizza stone in oven and preheat to 450 F.

4. When dough is ready, turn out on to a lightly floured surface to form your crust (see pizza dough directions). Sprinkle parchment paper with cornmeal and place your formed crust on it. Brush the crust with the remaining 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Spread half of the Fontina and mozzarella over the crust. Next layer with the roasted vegetables and caramelized onion. Top with the remaining Fontina and mozzarella.

5. Place pizza onto the preheated pizza stone and bake for 10-12 minutes, until the crust is golden brown and the cheese is bubbling. Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes before slicing.

Makes 1 pizza.

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