Grilled Zucchini & Goat Cheese Pizza


You seen read the title and thought "What in the world?" Then you seen the picture and now your thinking, "Well, maybe". It is that time of year again when most of us have zucchini coming out of our ears. We all try to be creative in coming up with ways to use the bountiful crop that grows so plentiful this time of year. This is one of those creative recipes.

We have all had zucchini bread, had it in a stir fry, sometimes in lasagna, etc... we use every way imaginable. We get in zucchini ruts this time of year. I am about to add another recipe to your zucchini collection. How about on pizza? Yes, zucchini on pizza. It is out of the ordinary, nontraditional, but mighty tasty. I adapted this recipe from Deb over at Smitten Kitchen. I stumbled across this recipe last zucchini season, thought Hmmm, interesting. I will have to try this....tonight. Am I glad I did.

We eat pizza at least once a week at my house. We love it. We love unique toppings, and trying unique flavor combinations. Pizza is so versatile. Pizza is fun. Pizza is tasty. This pizza is a summer favorite at our house.
I make my own dough. I love making pizza dough. It is cheap and easy. Time consuming? Yes, but it is wait time; it is well worth it. You're more than welcome to use store bought dough, it will taste fine. I choose to make my own dough, because I can add garlic, italian seasonings, fresh cracked pepper, etc... Whatever I am in the mood for, I add to my dough. It builds character, not only for me, but to my dough as well.

There is plenty to do while the dough is rising for this pizza. I like to take the package of goat cheese and put it in a bowl, allowing it to soften. Then I mix in lemon juice to make it spreadable.

This is also the time that I slice my zucchini. When I slice my zucchini, I use a mandolin. I love this tool. I have a cheap one from Wal-mart. It literally cost me $10.00. I use it quite frequently. It has two blades, one for thick slices and one for thin slices. You don't need a mandolin, but it makes the job quick and easy. A word of VERY CAREFUL. This little gadget is SHARP. I speak from experience. A trip to the ER for stitches would not be uncommon in this household, but I feel that I can doctor myself; most of the time. Isn't that what they make butterfly bandages and super glue for? (Disclaimer...please do not try doctoring yourself at home. If medical attention is needed, seek immediately). If your not using a mandolin, try to slice as thinly as possible to ensure even cooking.

It is summer, so I put my grill to work. It tastes great and keeps the heat out of the kitchen. After rolling, tossing, patting, however you shape your pizza, I recommend sprinkling with cornmeal to help add a little texture and prevent sticking. I also would rub some oil on the grates to also help with the sticking. That is cornmeal on the grates on the right side of the picture below.

You are only going to grill the dough on one side before building it. Once the dough starts to get those beautiful grill marks on the underneath and turns golden (remember just on one side, you will cook the other side after you build the pizza) remove. The side that is nice and golden you are going to spread the lemony goat cheese base. It is going to start to melt and get all aromatic (careful not to let the drool drip onto the pizza).

Its time to add the star of the show...Zucchini. Layer however you want. I went in a circular pattern, as in the shape of the pizza crust. Add designs, patterns, shapes, whatever, however, more, less, it is your pizza. I then drizzle extra virgin olive oil and then sprinkle with salt and fresh cracked pepper.

Its back to the grill to finish cooking the bottom part of the crust and start cooking the zucchini. It is almost time to eat. The anticipation is killing you, I know I have been there. Your intrigued. You have smelled your wonderful creation baking. Your mouth is watering. I have been there too.

You bring your Zucchini creation in from the grill. You stare at it in admiration. It is too beautiful to eat. The temptation is too great you have to cut into it, taste it, savor it.

Enjoy it. It is summer you have the right to enjoy your vices and if pizza is one of your vices then enjoy it with a glass of wine and make life complete.

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