Watercress Pesto Pizza with Blue Cheese and Balsamic Glaze
Watercress is among the most nutritious foods on earth, and its bold flavor accommodates some terrific pairings, like blue cheese, walnuts, and balsamic.
A really flavorful, well-rounded pesto pizza
It’s no secret that we Copes love pizza. And leafy greens. And pizzas topped with leafy greens. So when the lovely folks who grow watercress were looking for interesting spring recipes, a really flavorful, well-rounded pizza came to mind immediately. Shocker.
Watercress pesto + wispy fresh watercress
This pizza is full of bold flavors — peppery watercress, sweet concentrated balsamic, earthy walnuts, pungent blue cheese. It sports watercress in two tangentially related forms, which is a very good thing, I promise. (Psst…it’s watercress pesto underneath and wispy fresh watercress leaves on top. I didn’t mean to bury the lede there, but even on Umami Girl a sentence can only be so long.)
Watercress is a nutritional powerhouse and one of the most nutrient-dense foods on earth. I wish I were that nutrient-dense, to be honest.
Just gonna walk away from that one and act like it’s fine. In the meantime, here's a terrific pizza for you.
- 2 ounces (two packed cups) watercress leaves and tender stems, divided
- 1 ounce (one packed cup ) baby spinach
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 2 medium garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons grated Pecorino Romano cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, divided
- 1 multigrain pizza dough ball (about 22 ounces)
- 1/2 pound fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
- 2 ounces gorgonzola dolce or other mild, creamy blue cheese, crumbled
- Balsamic glaze
- Preheat oven to 500°F with a pizza stone, upside down-sheet pan or 12-inch cast iron skillet on a rack in the center.
- To make the pesto, fit a food processor with the blade. Place half the watercress in the bowl along with the spinach, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, pecorino, salt and half the walnuts. Pulse until finely minced and well combined, stopping to scrape down the sides once or twice.
- Divide the dough into two equal portions and stretch each into a 12-inch circle. If you like, place each prepared dough round on a piece of parchment paper to make it easier to slide in and out of the oven.
- Spread half the pesto onto each piece of dough and top with the mozzarella. Bake for about 10 minutes, until browned and bubbly. Sprinkle with the remaining walnuts and the blue cheese and return to the oven for one minute more.
- Drizzle pizzas with balsamic glaze and top with remaining watercress. Cut into slices and serve right away.