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  • Recipe Room  »  Pumpkin pizza with olives and bocconcini



    • 600 g ripe pumpkin, peeled, seeded and cut into 1.5–2 cm pieces
    • ½ cup (125 ml) extra virgin olive oil
    • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    • ¼ cup (60 ml) verjuice
    • 500 g fresh bocconcini or fior di latte, cut into 2 cm pieces
    • 60 g pitted kalamata olives
    • flat-leaf parsley leaves, to serve

    Pizza dough

    • 15 g fresh yeast or 2 teaspoons dried yeast
    • ½ teaspoon white sugar, if needed
    • 1¼ cups (310 ml) lukewarm wate
    • 500 g unbleached strong plain flour, plus extra for dusting
    • 2 tablespoons whole milk powder
    • ¼ cup (60 ml) extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for greasing
    • polenta, for dusting

    Pumpkin pizza with olives and bocconcini

    Making pizzas is all about the interaction that occurs: I often have all the ingredients laid out for guests to create their own designs.

    If you’re cooking in a conventional oven, a pizza stone is a must for a nice crisp crust: these cost around $15 and are available from kitchen shops and outdoor stores.

    My other tip is to make the dough in advance: divide into equal portions, roll into balls, cover with plastic film and store in the fridge until needed.


    First make the pizza dough. If using fresh yeast, combine with the ½ teaspoon sugar and 1 tablespoon of the warm water in a small bowl, dissolving the yeast with your fingers or mashing it with a fork. Set aside for 5–10 minutes or until foamy.

    Mix the flour, milk powder and 1½ teaspoons salt in a large bowl, then make a well in the centre and add the olive oil and yeast mixture (or dried yeast).

    Pour in the remaining warm water and stir until well combined, then turn the dough out onto a lightly floured bench and knead for 10 minutes or until shiny and smooth. Place the dough in a well-oiled bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic film and leave in a draught-free spot for 1–1½ hours or until doubled in size.

    Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured bench, then knock it back and knead again for a few minutes. Divide the dough into 6 or 8 equal portions. (At this point you can cover the dough and store in the fridge, if making in advance.)

    Roll each piece into a ball and leave to rest under a damp tea towel for 15 minutes. Using a rolling pin, roll out each ball of dough to a thickness of 1 cm.

    Meanwhile, preheat a fan-forced oven to 240°C. Toss the pumpkin in ¼ cup (60 ml) of the olive oil, then season with the salt and pepper.

    Spread the pumpkin on a heavy-based baking tray with a lip, making sure not to crowd it. Roast for 20 minutes or until golden brown, then drizzle with verjuice to deglaze. Roast for a further 5 minutes, then set aside to cool.

    Working in batches, stretch each piece of dough by resting it over the back of your hands, with clenched fists and your knuckles pressed together.

    Gently pull your hands apart, allowing the weight of the dough to stretch itself. (This step keeps the air in the dough, making for a lighter pizza crust.) Alternatively, roll the dough a little thinner with a rolling pin.

    Lightly dust a pizza tile or heavy-based baking tray with polenta and lay the dough on it. Repeat with the remaining dough.

    Lightly drizzle the trays of dough with oil and par-bake for 7 minutes or until golden underneath and puffed.

    Sprinkle over some bocconcini, then top with the pumpkin and olives (the crust will deflate slightly when it is covered with the topping).

    Bake for another 10–12 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and golden. Sprinkle the pizzas with parsley and add a last flourish of oil, then slice and serve at once.

    This recipe was provided to Foodwise from the book “Maggie’s Verjuice Cookbook” by Maggie Beer and photography by Sharyn Cairns, published by Lantern rrp $39.95. 

    Submitted by
    Maggie Beer

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