Happy September! It is fall! We can eat fall-ish foods and still enjoy the summer veggies & BBQ fun. To kick off some inbetween season food I give you ricotta cheese. I have a love affair with ricotta. NOT cottage cheese…that I avoid. I can’t imagine when people don’t like ricotta, especially cooked into a dish. Like people who don’t like chocolate. Baffling.
I was itching for some this summer but thought it wasn’t the right time for lasagna or stuffed shells etc. I could eat it plain, by the spoonful, but that’s not a meal. My next thought was topping a pizza.
1 chicken breast, marinated & grilled
1 cup ricotta
1 cup shredded mozzarella
½ red pepper, sliced
1/3 cup pesto
Pre-bake the pizza dough for 20 minutes at 400 degrees until it begins to get crispy, but not cooked the whole way. (pre-cooking it a bit helps get it cooked through without drying out the toppings.
Spread half of the pesto onto the crust, then top with shredded mozzarella, peppers, sliced chicken, and dollops of ricotta.
Drizzle the remaining pesto on top. Throw on any leftover shredded cheese.
Bake the topped pizza for another 10-15 minutes at 400 degrees.
I adored this pizza. The creamy ricotta was a perfect pairing with some powerful pesto. These flavors definitely made this a special pizza. The chicken seems quite optional but I think it was integral to keeping the pizza fresh & not wintery. I also only used 1 chicken breast. They tend to be so big so with any other topping, one is plenty.