About every three months growing up, my fellow sports team members and I would crowd into the back room of the local pizza place, getting ready to receive our participation trophies and watch a bound-to-be-horrific slideshow presentation put together by one of our parents. No matter the sport- soccer, softball, tennis- my dad was always there, either as coach or parent, applauding our efforts and giving a speech of praise. Pizza after pizza came out, Shirley Temples after Shirley Temples were ordered. Inevitably, one of us (okay, me) got stuck in a children’s high chair and had to get unscrewed out. And at the end of the night, we would all head back to our respective homes, only to do the same thing all over again at the end of the next sport’s season.
This tradition only got better once my dad installed a pizza oven in our backyard. The parties transitioned to being at my house, the girls enthusiastic as they stepped inside, ready to make their own pizzas with whatever toppings their hearts desired!
One day, after the pizzas were all gone and we sat chatting, most likely rubbing our stomachs after eating slice after slice after slice, my dad removed a final pizza from the oven. We looked around, not knowing who had made the final one, wondering who could possibly eat another piece. But when my dad set it down on the table, bringing out the pizza cutter to slice it into triangles, we noticed that this pie was very different.
Gone was the red sauce, the mozzarella, the pepperoni and veggies. Instead, this pizza was bright pink, glistening with sugar and honey, smelling like the inside of a bakery. Magically, we were no longer full, eagerly shoving our plates down the table to get a taste of our own.
And so was born the dessert pizza, a pizza that now, years after I’ve stopped having sports team parties, still graces every pizza party we have. My dad loves trying new recipes and toppings, coating the dough with everything from Nutella to maple syrup, from bananas to apples.
One of my favorites, however, is still the very first one that came out of the oven on that delicious, pizza filled day. The balance of fresh strawberries’ natural caramelized taste with the crispiness of fresh dough make for one happy camper!
What would be on your dream dessert pizza? Comment below!
- ½ cup of semolina flour
- 1 ball of uncooked pizza dough (I buy mine at whole foods)
- 1 cup of skim ricotta cheese
- 1.5 cups of strawberries (or berries of choice)
- 2 tablespoons of raw honey
- 2 tablespoons of coconut sugar
- 1 tablespoon of cinnamon
Note: A pizza stone works best to make the pizza crispy
Preheat your oven to 500F on bake (or, if using a pizza oven, heat to 750F). As the oven preheats, sprinkle the semolina flour onto onto a flat surface, preferably a cutting board. Roll out your dough until it is about a finger’s thickness. Next, coat the dough with ricotta evenly, keeping it about an inch away from the edges. Spread out the strawberries and then drizzle the honey on top. In a small bowl, mix together the sugar and cinnamon, sprinkling that on top of the pizza as well.
Once the oven is finished heating, slide the pizza onto the stone (or, if no stone, directly on the wire rack) and into the oven. The pizza should be done in about fifteen minutes (3-5 if using a pizza oven), but after ten, switch the setting to broil to create a nice crisp and bubble on top. Once the dough is firm and the dough is a bit browned, remove from oven. Let the pizza stand and cool for about 2 minutes before slicing into it.
Serve with vanilla bean ice cream or whip cream and enjoy!