Delicata is one of my all time favorite squash if nothing else than for its simplicity. As the name implies, the tender skin is well, delicate, only slightly tougher than a summer squash, and does not need to be peeled before eating. I like to slice it into rings and roast (seeds removed of course.)
I found this recipe months ago and it was inteneded to be topped by summer peaches, but I loved the idea of using sweet roasted squash instead. The pizza crust doesn’t have to rise overnight in the refrigerator, but the results will be more flavorful. As a matter of fact, I baked some leftover dough about 4 nights later with good results.
It is very hard to get stellar results in your home oven, but I think a pizza stone is a wise investment that will give you as close to a blistered, chewy crust as you are going to get without a wood-fired oven. I actually use one of The Professor’s kiln shelves, but you can find pizza stones at any kitchen or big box store.
Roasted Delicata Squash, Hazelnut, and Spinach Pizza Recipe
Adapted from O Magazine
- Yield: 4-6 1x
For the Dough:
- 2 cups warm water (about 110°F)
- 1 (1 1/4-ounce) packet active dry yeast
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 4 cups bread flour, plus extra for stretching dough and dusting pizza peel
- 1/2 cup cornmeal
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
For the Toppings:
- 1 medium delicata squash, cut into 1/4-inch thick rings, seeds removed
- 1/4 cup olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- 1 yellow onion, sliced
- 1/2 cup hazelnuts, coarsley chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
- red chile flakes, to taste
- 5 ounces baby spinach
- Shaved Parmesan, optional
For the Dough:
- Combine water, yeast, and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment. Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes. Add 3 cups of flour, cornmeal, olive oil, and salt; mix until combined, about 2 minutes. If dough seems sticky add remaining cup of flour a little at a time until dough cleans the sides of the bowl. Continue mixing until dough is very tight, about 3 mintues more.
- Cover with a towel and let rest 20 minutes. Knead on medium speed until dough is smooth and springs back to the touch, about 5 minutes more. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate over night. (Take dough out of refrigerator 1 hour before making pizzas.
For the Toppings:
- Heat oven to 425°F. Brush both sides of squash rings with olive oil and lay in a single layer on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast until knife tender, about 15-20 minutes.
- Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a medium frying pan over medium heat. Add onions and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally until brown and caramelized.
- Heat remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil in a medium frying pan over medium-high heat. Add hazelnuts, garlic, and paprika and cook, stirring occasionally until hazelnuts are toasted and fragrant, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
For the Pizzas:
- Place a pizza stone or a upside-down baking sheet in the bottom of the oven and heat oven to 500°F. Divide dough into 8 pieces. Dust a pizza peel or the back side of a baking sheet with flour. Working with one piece at a time, stretch dough until 1/4-inch thick on a lightly floured work surface. Transfer dough to pizza peel, brush with olive oil and top with some onions, a few slices of squash, a sprinkling of nut mixture and some chile flakes.
- Slide pizza onto hot stone and bake until blistered and crust is crisp, about 8 to 10 minutes. Repeat with remaining dough and toppings.
- Remove pizza from oven and top each with a handful of spinach a drizzling of olive oil, and shavings of Parmesan.