Mustard Green & Pea Pesto Pizza on Spelt Flour Crust
Can you think of a better way to eat your greens than pizza?
I sure can’t. I luuurrrrvvve me some pizza.
This recipe is one that I’ve been meaning to make for almost a year now. It was inspired by a mustard green and pea pesto appetizer that we had at Wente Vineyards last spring. They served it almost like a bruschetta and I remember being floored by how good that pesto tasted. I’m sure the wine didn’t hurt either. ;)
If you’re new to mustard greens, they actually look almost identical to kale but they have more of a bright green color to them. In addition to providing a healthy dose of vitamins A, K, and C, they’re packed with phytonutrients that have cancer-preventive properties.
The flavor is slightly peppery and it makes for a perfect match with the subtle sweetness of green peas. Add both of those to a little fresh lemon with garlic and walnuts and you’ve got yourself one vibrantly delicious pesto!
The first time I made it, I served it on a whole grain store bought crust for a quick and healthy weeknight meal but I decided to go the homemade route the second time around and made a crust with whole grain sprouted spelt flour. It turned out fairly dense with an earthy flavor that we loved but if you’re used to eating white flour or prefer a lighter texture to your crust, I would recommend using light spelt flour instead.
You could also serve the pesto with your favorite pasta or even on a sandwich. It’s packed with fresh flavor and a ton GREEN plant-powered protein so really, you can’t wrong. :)
1 cup peas, fresh or frozen and defrosted
1 bunch mustard greens, removed from stem (appox. 4-5 cups packed)
4 garlic cloves
1/2 cup walnuts
1/3 cup parmesan cheese + 1/4 cup for topping (sub 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast for vegan version)
2 tablespoons olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
salt & pepper to taste
1 leek, chopped + 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
balsamic glaze for topping
Spelt Flour Pizza Crust
2 cups whole grain spelt flour (or light spelt flour)
1 packet yeast (or 2 teaspoons) + 1 cup warm water
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
- Prepare the crust by warming 1 cup of water in the microwave for 20-30 seconds. It should be warm to touch but not hot or it will kill the yeast. In a large bowl, combine the yeast and the warm water along with the brown sugar and stir together. Allow to sit for five minutes, until slightly frothy.
- Next add the spelt flour and mix together. Add more flour as needed so that you are able to start kneading it with your hands. Continue to knead it for about 1 minute, adding more flour if it still too sticky. Drizzle the inside of the bowl with olive oil and use your hands to make sure it is thoroughly greased. Lightly coat the dough with the oil then cover the bowl and set aside in a warm place to rise for an hour or two. Alternatively, you can refrigerate the dough until ready to use but you will have to let it sit out for 2-3 hours to rise before cooking.
- To make the pesto, combine all of the ingredients (minus the extra 1/4 cup parm for topping) in a food processor and pulse until smooth. This can also be refrigerated in an airtight container to use the next day, if desired.
- Once you are ready to cook the pizza, preheat the oven 450°F. Roll the dough out into a 10-inch circle (or desired shape) and transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a pizza stone. Lightly brush the surface with olive oil then bake in the oven for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile warm one tablespoon olive oil over low to medium heat in a small skillet to lightly sauté the leeks for about 5 minutes. Remove the crust from the oven and then spread the pesto on top. Sprinkle with leeks and remaining 1/4 cup parmesan then bake for an additional 2-3 minutes. This is just enough time for the topping to warm slightly. You can cook it for a few minutes longer if you like but the pesto will turn brown.
- Remove pizza from the oven, top with balsamic glaze and cut into slices. Serve warm and enjoy!
Prep time includes making pizza crust and letting it rise. Making the pesto alone only takes 15 minutes.