I went through a phase this summer where I couldn’t stop making crispy spinach pizza, but I had no plans to tell you about for a couple reasons, the first of which is it’s absolutely hideous. It looks like someone melted Oscar the Grouch onto a pizza dough and little I did improved this, not making it round, nor rectangular, in good light nor light so dim that maybe you wouldn’t notice it at all.
Crispy spinach pizza isn’t its official name (that’s, in fact, The Popeye) but in our household dish names are marketing devices and heaps of spinach are, understandably, a hard sell. It’s not much easier with adults. Yes, I know many of us enjoy green vegetables and volunteer to eat them on the regular, but even as one of those people, I felt nothing but panic and dread the first time I saw this unsettlingly large pile of charred-edge greens and no sign of cheese or any other anchors of joy coming across the room to me at the late Co., and knew I’d ordered all wrong.
Except it’s very, very good. Just about anyone who lived through the year 2010 knows what kale chips are, but did you know that other greens also get crispy when they hang out in the oven? If you’re questioning whether you *need* crispy greens in your life, consider how happy your feet will be when walking down a sidewalk through piles of fallen leaves a few weeks from now. That’s the effect of this pizza, except there’s also a small but mighty layer of cheese underneath, a complex salty, stretchy, funky three-fer of mozzarella, pecorino, and gruyere that anchors the spinach to the crust and together they hit the spot.
One year ago: Chocolate Tahini Challah Buns and Quick Pasta and Chickpeas
Two years ago: Magic Apple Plum Cobbler and Garlic Wine and Butter Steamed Clams
Three years ago: Oat and Wheat Sandwich Bread and The Perfect Manhattan
Four years ago: Cucumber Lemonade and Sunken Apple and Honey Cake
Five years ago: Fudgy Chocolate Sheet Cake and Frico Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Six years ago: Homemade Wheat Thins and Crackly Banana Bread
Seven years ago: Apple and Honey Challah and Apple Pie Cookies
Eight years ago: Monkey Cake and Beef Chili with Cheddar Sour Cream Biscuits
Nine years ago: Lebanese-Style Stuffed Eggplant
Ten years ago: The Baked Brownie, Spiced Up, Braised Romano Beans and Spinach Quiche
Eleven years ago: Cream Cheese Noodle Kugel and Couscous and Feta-Stuffed Peppers
[New!] Twelve years ago: Orange Chocolate Chunk Cake and Acorn Squash with Chile-Lime Vinaigrette
And for the other side of the world:
Six Months Ago: Melting Potatoes and Asparagus and Egg Salad with Walnuts and Mint
1.5 Years Ago: Easiest French Fries and Peanut Butter-Swirled Brownies
2.5 Years Ago: Sesame Soba and Ribboned Omelet Salad and Eggs in Purgatory, Puttanesca-Style
3.5 Years Ago: Black Bottom Oatmeal Pie and Potatoes with Soft Eggs and Bacon Vinaigrette
4.5 Years Ago: Whole-Grain Cinnamon Swirl Bread and Three Bean Chili
Crispy Spinach Pizza
No matter how much spinach it looks like when you put it on, I promise, it’s not too much. We all know the jokes about spinach, right? You’ll be glad you heaped it all the way to the toppling over point.
This makes two 12-inch round or one 13×18 (half-sheet) thin-crusted pizza
- Olive oil
- Cornmeal, for dusting
- 1 fully risen pizza dough or about a 2/3 volume of my lazy fitted-to-your-schedule favorite or your favorite, whichever it may be
- 2 ounces (2/3 cup) grated gruyere or comte cheese
- 2 ounces pecorino cheese, chopped into mixed-sized rubble or 2/3 cup grated
- 4 ounces mozzarella, either torn into shreds, diced, or (as shown) in ciliegine
- 1 large garlic clove, thinly sliced or grated
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 8 to 9 ounces fresh spinach, larger stems removed
Coat either 1 13×18-inch rimmed half-sheet pan or 2 12-inch round pizza pans lightly with olive oil. Sprinkle lightly with cornmeal. Use your fingers to stretch dough to the edges of the pan(s). If it puts up a lot of resistance, let it rest for 5 to 10 minutes, and resume working the dough to the sides.
Top dough(s) with cheeses, a few grinds of black pepper, and garlic. Heap spinach all over; season with salt. Bake pizza until spinach is wilted and slightly browned, about 10 minutes. Remove pizza from oven and drizzle with olive oil. Cut and serve immediately.