Asparagus and I haven’t had the best relationship over the years. I think it was mostly a misunderstanding on my part. Because I really wanted to like asparagus, I did what I usually do with foods I’m trying to get used to: combine it with a food that I absolutely adore. In this case, I buried it in a pizza.
Peaches are also on my list, but I think I’ll have to take a different approach with that one.
When I saw this Shaved Asparagus Pizza submitted by TK member keeperrox, I hoped it would be my entrance into the asparagus-lover’s club. And I believe it was.
You only need six ingredients for this recipe: enough pizza dough for one 12-16 inch pizza, one bunch of asparagus, some fresh mozzarella (although regular, grated mozzarella would be just fine), olive oil, freshly ground black pepper, and some garlic and herb cheese spread. The recipe specified Boursin cheese, but any brand would do. You could even use garlic and herb flavored cream cheese.
I learned a lot about asparagus lately. Look for stalks that are thinner, no bigger than a dime’s width. Treat them like flowers when you get them home, cutting off a 1/2-inch from the bottom and putting them upright in an inch or so of water. And as with any vegetable, make sure they aren’t bruised, wrinkled, or limp.
When you’re ready to prep the stalks, bend each one until it breaks. Discard the bottom part that breaks off. That’s the stalk’s way of telling you where the tender section ends and the woody, tough section begins. Pretty smart vegetable.
Then take a vegetable peeler and peel off the outer-most edges and leaves. Discard those. Then keep peeling until you have nothing left but the tip.
Put the shavings and tips together in a pile and set them aside.
Time to get the pizza dough dressed! As far as pizza baking is concerned, if you have a favorite pan, stone, or method that works for you, by all means, carry on. I’ll show you the way I like to do it. I used to have a pizza stone, but it tragically broke a few weeks ago. (Moment of silence.) I’ve tweaked my method a bit and it seems to do a great job.
First preheat your oven to 450 degrees F and place an upside down rimmed baking sheet (or a flat one) inside.
Turn another rimmed cookie sheet upside down (or use a flat one if you have it) on the countertop or workspace . Place a piece of parchment on top, just large enough to cover the surface without a lot of extra hanging over. Wouldn’t want to start a fire in that screaming hot oven. Stretch out the dough and place it on the paper.
Drizzle a tablespoonful of olive oil over the dough.
Smear it around with your hands. Enjoy soft cuticles for the next few hours.
Take the sliced, fresh mozzarella and spread them around evenly on the dough. I obviously didn’t slice mine thin enough, but it melted well and turned out all right in the end.
Spread the asparagus shavings evenly over the cheese.
Crank a generous amount of black pepper over the shavings. You’ll love it in the end.
Now for the garlic and herb cheese spread. Here’s the brand I used. I thought it might help for you to see the packaging in case you weren’t sure what it was. This stuff is so packed with flavor. It was all I could do to keep my fingers out of it.
Dot the pizza with the cheese. My cheese came in a 4-ounce package, and I used almost all of it.
Take the pan holding the pizza over to the oven and slide the pizza (with the parchment) onto the preheated pan inside the oven. Bake for around 15–20 minutes until the cheese is melted and the crust is as browned as you like. To get the bottom crispier, remove the parchment about 5 minutes before the pizza is done.
Gorgeous, isn’t it? I love the browned spots on the cheese and the singed edges of the asparagus.
Once you cut it, it will begin to disappear. In my case, the culprits had extremely small hands.
My two little girls and I nearly ate this whole pizza ourselves—greens and all. Although the asparagus was encased in bread and cheese, its taste was still distinct and fresh. The tingly bite from the black pepper and that garlic and herb cheese? Swoon.
Asparagus and I have been reconciled.
Thanks so much keeperrox for an easy and delicious pizza recipe! Her recipe box is loaded with unique recipes. Go check it out!
This was born out of necessity. I needed something to eat and I used what was in my fridge: some no-knead dough, some asparagus, some fresh mozzarella, and Boursin cheese (it was on sale). The result? Deliciousness.
- 1 whole Batch Of Pizza Dough - Enough For 1 12-16 Inch Pizza
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil, For Drizzling The Dough
- 8 ounces, weight Fresh Mozzarella
- 1 bunch Asparagus
- 5-¼ ounces, weight Boursin Cheese (or Similar Herb And Garlic Spreadable Cheese)
- Fresh Cracked Black Pepper
Preheat oven to 450 F.
If not already shaped, stretch your pizza dough into a large circle 12-16 inches in diameter and place on your pizza pan or stone. Drizzle dough with a thin stream of olive oil.
Slice fresh mozzarella as thinly as possible and arrange in a single layer over dough.
Using a vegetable peeler shave your asparagus into thin ribbons. Use the entire bunch, as you might only get 3 or 4 good ribbons from each spear. Pile asparagus shavings on top of the mozzarella. The asparagus WILL cook down so you want to use more than you think is necessary.
Top asparagus with several cranks of black pepper and dot generously with Boursin cheese. (I tend to use 1/4-1/2 a package per pizza.)
Bake on pizza stone or baking sheet for 15-20 minutes or until crust is golden brown. Let cool for 2-3 minutes before slicing and serving.
Be sure to check out Natalie’s own beautiful food blog, Perrys’ Plate, where you can see her growing collection of lovely recipes. There’s always something new to see there. Go visit now!
Comments are closed for this recipe.
Lauren on 5.17.2011
Made this for dinner tonight!! Excellent! Amazing and super easy!
Marilyn on 5.10.2011
Well, I made this on a whole grain sandwich thin. It was delicious…after I remembered to pepper it. That’s not a step to miss! Thank you so much!!
lmoore49 on 4.23.2011
I made this last night for company. It was wonderful!! I fully intend to make it again and again. thanks!!
Lori P on 4.20.2011
This was fantastic!!! Will be making it again for an Easter Dinner appetizer.
Betty on 4.19.2011
This was good. I made a single serving on a flour tortilla. Per my daughter, she said to spread the boursin (I used cream cheese mixed with garlic and pesto) on the bottom of the slightly pre-baked tortilla, then added the asparagus and cheese on top. It did some salt too but very good!
JulesInDC on 4.18.2011
I whipped this up on Friday night for my good friend, who was arriving on the bus for the weekend, and texted ahead that she was “starving!!!”
It took me only minutes to prep, and baked like a dream on parchment paper with the preheated, inverted sheet pan method. The timing was perfect, and I pulled a hot pizza from the oven just as she walked in the front door. It was gorgeous, delicious and SO EASY!!
I like all things spicy, and know she does, too, so I added some crushed red pepper flakes before baking…
maidofclay on 4.16.2011
delish! My whole family loved it tonight. Even the 18mo old and the Meatarian man. Thanks!
chrisgelica on 4.14.2011
I just made the smitten kitchen version of this a few days ago! It was really good.
thefrankmom on 4.14.2011
This is a must try for me! Yum!
keeperrox on 4.14.2011
Actually, it’s inspired by a dish that my aunt makes all the time. She shaves the asparagus, then gives it a quick sauté with some garlic. Then she tosses it with the tiny fresh mozzarella balls and drizzles the whole thing with balsamic. It’s delicious, but I’m pretty sure she got that recipe from a magazine, so I never posted it.
Laura Ang on 4.14.2011
I made a pizza very similar to this the other night and was considering posting the recipe! The pizza I made had asparagus spears instead of shaved, and also had broccoli, wilted spinach, zucchini and olives. Oh, and instead of an herb cheese top, I had some pepper jack cheese for a little kick. Mmmmmm. I love pizza, but I love veggie pizza the best!
Rhiannon on 4.14.2011
oh my this looks absolutely delish!! i must try this!
Amy | She Wears Many Hats on 4.14.2011
Great idea! Thanks for featuring it Natalie. Tucking this one away for future use.
Steph on 4.14.2011
Can’t wait to try this! Our favorite way to have asparagus is sauteed in garlic butter with sliced baby portabellas…pretty sure that would be amazing here as well. Only a couple more weeks until our asparagus is up and ready here in Southern NY…
Mahza on 4.14.2011
I make pizza just about every Friday night. This is on the menu for tomorrow (today is Thursday). I also have been checking out older recipes and saw the one for the fig-prosciutto pizza. I have made something similar before and it’s one of our favorites. YUM.
bubblygirl on 4.14.2011
The green asparagus doesn’t need the peel. Only the white ones!
Natalie | Perry's Plate on 4.13.2011
Emily – If I’m ever in Oklahoma during the spring, I’m coming to your house!
Natalie | Perry's Plate on 4.13.2011
I’m not sure where Melissa’s inspiration came from, but I’m glad she got it! Thanks for the link, April.
Emily on 4.13.2011
If ever you start to love asparagus so much that you want some fresh Oklahoman grown stuff, its asparagus season on our farm. And we LOVE asparagus pizza too.
Karly on 4.13.2011
Gorgeous, Natalie! Your photographs are just beautiful!
Yummy recipes, too!
Beanwean on 4.13.2011
Very much like the recipe I’ve been using since last May from Smitten Kitchen. I like the addition of Rondele!
April G. on 4.13.2011
This is so close to Smitten Kitchen’s shaved asparagus pizza that it really should be given an inspired by credit.
WenDee L Riffe on 4.13.2011
mmm–this looks sooo good!! i am also glad you showed the packaging because i have never used this stuff before i have 2 well established asparagus rows in my garden and i used my new asparagus knife this evening to cut my first bunch!! i know what i will be using this first bunch for~~cant wait to try this!!!!
Natalie | Perry's Plate on 4.13.2011
Thank YOU, Melissa! (By the way, I’m glad I have a name to go with this recipe now :))
Melissa K on 4.13.2011
OMG, that’s MY recipe! I’m sitting here blushing. Thanks for featuring it, and with such beautiful pictures to boot. I’m honored.
JulesInDC on 4.13.2011
Thanks for the inspiration–this looks easy and delicious!! Quick, fairly healthy dinner, especially with the whole wheat crust (Trader Joe’s down the block has them bagged up and ready-to-go).
kate on 4.13.2011
This looks so good!! I have never thought to “shave” asparagus like this, but will for sure be trying it. The fresh mozzarella and Rondele sealed the deal for me!
Maggie on 4.13.2011
Ok …we LOVE to eat Homemade Pizza…Mozzarlella….anykind of cream cheese Mixture…….and we LOVE lightly Roasted Asparagus….So Shaving it and adding to a Pizza will be the Bomb at our House!!!
Angie on 4.13.2011
Looks great! Might have to add a little prociutto or bacon crumbles for my meatlover… can’t wait!
Kate on 4.13.2011
Your photos are dazzling, and this pizza looks fantastic. When it came up on PW’s site, I actually gasped out loud.
Nice job. Cannot wait to try this. Thanks ~
Hillary on 4.13.2011
What a beautiful photo. What’s not to love with that line up of ingredients! Thanks for the inspiration!
cicadagirl on 4.13.2011
This sounds amazing!!
Susan Osborne on 4.13.2011
This looks fantastic. I think I’m going to make it on Friday. I’d love to feature it on my pizza site, http://www.completelypizza.com. Of course, I’ll make my own version and take pics and still link to this!! Thank you!
Chrystal on 4.13.2011
That does look good. If you aren’t normally a fan of asparagus, try laying it on a cookie sheet, drizzling it with olive oil, and seasoning it with salt & pepper (or what I use for almost everything – Nature’s Seasoning Blend). Roast in a 375° oven for 20 mins or so. It gets a little crispy and is so flavorful! Yum! (Again, thin spears work best…)
missinthekitchen on 4.13.2011
Asparagus grows wild near our house and we love it. I’ve never shaved it or had it on pizza, I will be trying this!
Emily E on 4.13.2011
Goodness…this looks DELICIOUS. Cant wait to try!
Jeanette on 4.13.2011
i gotta try this, i can’t wait!!!
Jacqueline on 4.13.2011
Oh yum! I love asparagus and like another commentor said, I never thought to shave it either. I have used that Rondele cheese before and it is scrumptuous. Thanks for a great step-by-step and recipe. Can’t wait to try it. We usually have pizza on Saturday night after Sabbath so this will be a nice leavened treat before passover starts Monday night.
meme32 on 4.13.2011
I am in aparagus heaven! Gotta try this baby.
Maggie on 4.13.2011
Looks delicious! My husband and son would never eat it, but I would. I think I will make an individual size pizza on a pita just for me.
Michelle on 4.13.2011
I think shaved asparagus is just beautiful! I just posted a pizza dough recipe @ http://ladystiles.blogspot.com/2011/04/perfect-pizza-crust.html – I also adore pizza and think it is incredibly empowering to make the entire think from scratch.
Urban Wife on 4.13.2011
I am so glad to have another use for asparagus! Usualy I just saute it and call it a day but this pizza…holy YUM! Thanks for sharing.
B. in the Know on 4.13.2011
This looks so delicious and would be perfect for a warm night on the patio!
carolinagirl on 4.13.2011
Love, love, love asparagus! I know my son and I will be fighting over this! Thanks for sharing!
Jessica @ How Sweet It Is on 4.13.2011
What a perfect recipe for Spring! I would lose asparagus this way.
Sandy on 4.13.2011
An even better veggie pizza — yum!
Heather (Heather's Dish) on 4.13.2011
i have never thought to shave asparagus, but it sounds amazing! not to mention it’s stunning