Make a Little, Buy a Little: Grilled Pizza with Spinach and Ricotta Salata

July 6, 2011

Healthy eaters take note: pizza needn't be relegated to the "junk food" category any longer. Fresh tomato sauce, heaping handfuls of freshly dressed spinach, and a delicate draping of tangy ricotta salata are all you need to craft this killer pie. Haven't come across ricotta salata? It's the tangier, semi-firm version of the creamy, fresh cheese you know as ricotta. Pressed and salted, it's best used with a light hand.

This week: Grilled Pizza with Spinach and Ricotta Salata and Fruit Popsicles from the Freezer department pair up for a light summer supper.

grilled pizza spinach ricotta salata tricia martin
Photo by Tricia Martin

MAKE: Grilled Pizza with Spinach and Ricotta Salata

Grilled Pizza with Spinach and Ricotta Salata by Whole Foods Market

Serves 2 to 4

6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tomatoes, cored and finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
4 large basil leaves, roughly chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon finely chopped red onion
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 large pre-baked pizza crust, such as 365 Everyday Value Organic pizza crust
2 ounces ricotta salata , shaved into shards with a vegetable peeler
1/4 pound baby spinach

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until light brown, about 3 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, sugar, parsley, basil, salt and pepper and increase heat to medium. Cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 5 minutes; set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk together onions, vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Drizzle in 4 tablespoons of the remaining oil while continuing to whisk constantly; set vinaigrette aside.
  3. Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Lightly brush both sides of pizza crust with remaining 1 tablespoon oil and transfer to grill. Turn crust often, flipping once, until toasted all over, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a clean surface and top with reserved tomato sauce, spreading it out to the edges. Top with half of the ricotta salata and carefully return pizza crust to grill until cheese is softened and pizza is just heated through, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board.
  4. Toss spinach with vinaigrette, then arrange on top of pizza. Garnish with remaining ricotta salata, cut pizza into slices and serve.

BUY: Fruit Popsicles from the Freezer department

How would you make this pizza your own? Would you make smaller, individual pizzas using round pita breads, or use another tender green instead of spinach? Do you have some Pecorino Romano lying around, ready to fill in for the ricotta salata? Share your ideas for customizing this recipe in the comments section below!

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