Margarita Pizza with Spaghetti Squash Crust
Margarita Pizza with Spaghetti Squash Crust
We have been trying to eat healthier at our house. More veggies, less carbs, etc. Mike is on board, but not always a fan. Today, he thought I was making his favorite meal - my butternut squash and summer squash fritters - but I told him I needed to use a spaghetti squash we've had for a few days and he was visibly disappointed. He mumbled something about how he was sure it would be good, but there was no way I could top summer squash pancakes. Challenge Accepted. Since pizza is already his favorite meal, I decided to try my hand at a spaghetti squash crust pizza. The results are in and he is a very satisfied hubby.
Servings 4 people (2 slices each)
- 1 medium spaghetti squash cut in half lengthwise, and seeds scooped out
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt
- ground pepper
- 1 large egg beaten
- 3-4 green onions sliced (green part only)
- 1 tsp garlic salt
- .5 cup mozzerella shredded
- 15 oz diced tomatoes Italian Seasoned (drained)
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- .5 tsp crushed red pepper
- 1 medium Roma tomato thinly sliced
- .5 cup Parmesan cheese grated
- 8 oz mozzerella cut into 1-inch cubes
- 9-12 leaves basil fresh
Prep the Spaghetti Squash
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- Cut ends off spaghetti squash. Place on flat end for stability and then cut squash in half lengthwise.
- Use a serving spoon to scrape out the seeds and strings.
- Brush or spray squash with olive oil and then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on baking sheet (flat side up).
- Bake in preheated oven for approximately 45 minutes (until the squash is tender and can be shredded easily with a fork).
- Combine all sauce ingredients in small saucepan. Be sure to drain the diced tomatoes of as much juice as you can before adding to the pan.
Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally.
- When squash is finished cooking, remove from oven and set aside for 10-15 minutes to give it time to cool. While it is cooling, add the rest of the ingredients for the crust in a medium size bowl. Once the crust has cooled enough so that you can handle it easily (do not rush this – if the squash is too hot, it will cook the eggs when mixing them together in the next step), use a fork to separate the squash from the skin.
- Squeeze as much moisture as you can from the squash and then mix in with egg and cheese mixture until well combined.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and then pour your mixture into center. Using a spoon, spread the mixture into a 10-12 inch circle (you want it to be thin, but not have holes in it).
- Bake until golden brown (approximately 20 minutes)
Prepare Toppings & Cook Pizza
- While the crust is cooking, prepare your toppings. Slice your tomato very thin (the trick is to use a very sharp knife), grate Parmesan using small holes on side of box grater. Cut mozzarella into 1/2 inch cubes. Select 9-12 leaves of basil from your garden or the fresh basil from the store.
- When crust is done, remove from oven and spread a thin layer of sauce. Next, spread out your tomato slices. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, then place mozzarella slices about 1-1/2 to 2 inches apart. Add basil leaves.
- Bake pizza for an additional 4-8 minutes (until mozzarella is melting). Remove from oven and garnish with more fresh basil if desired.
Make it a Meal...
- Serve with Caesar salad and a nice light wine. Red is fine too, but I like a nice Pinot Grigio to bring out the light flavors and sweetness of the squash.
While It's Cooking...Pizza wasn't really popular in the United States until after World War 2. In the early 1900s Italian immigrants were cooking pizza at home using recipes handed down through the generations, but it was considered a peasant food and was only ever seen in Italian neighborhood homes. In 1905, Gennaro Lombardi applied to the New York City government for the first license to make and sell pizza in this country, at his grocery store on Spring Street in what was then a thriving Italian-American neighborhood. Neighborhood pizzerias followed in Trenton, New Jersey; Boston, Massachusetts; and New Haven, Connecticut but they catered to the poor ethnic neighborhoods they were established in. So what happened to spread pizza into mainstream America and make it popular with the non-Italian crowd? During World War 2 American soldiers were stationed in Italy and fell in love with the dish. They came home with a craving and the American pizza industry was born. For more information about the history of pizza in the United States, click here.
Calories: 449kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 117mg | Sodium: 1366mg | Potassium: 688mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 1540IU | Vitamin C: 21mg | Calcium: 611mg | Iron: 3mg
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