Ginger Chicken and Spinach Pesto Pizza

Serves 3 – 4:

Once a month my friends and I cook lunch at the Lincoln Park Community Shelter. Last night I picked up 7 lbs of dough for the lunch and wouldn’t you know it, I completely spaced the morning of and left it in my fridge. Fortunately someone ran out and picked up more dough but now I have 7 lbs of pizza dough to use up. That’s when I came up with the idea for Project Pizza. The goal is to create seven unusual but delicious flavor combos that will work on a whole-wheat pizza crust. So here we go….Project Pizza #1. Ginger marinated chicken with sautéed mushrooms on a bed of spinach pesto with loads of Parmesan cheese. My sweetie declared this one a winner. I agreed. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 6 oz of sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup of spinach leaves
  • ¼ cup of pine nuts
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tbsp of fresh ginger root
  • 1/2 – 2/3 lbs boneless skinless chicken
  • 1 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup plus 4 tbsp of EVOO
  • 1 lb of prepared whole wheat pizza dough

Prep It:

  • Preheat the oven to 450F and heat a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Peel the ginger root. Mince about 2 tbsp of the ginger root. Mince 2 cloves of garlic. Cut the chicken into 2-inch strips. In a large bowl, combine the garlic, ginger and chicken. Add 2 tbsp of EVOO and toss to combine all the ingredients. Set the chicken in the fridge to marinate while you prep the rest of the ingredients.
  • Prepare the pesto.
    • Toss the spinach leaves, 2 cloves of garlic, ½ cup of Parmesan cheese and 1/3 cup EVOO into a food processor or blender. Process / blend until the mixture is smooth. If it’s too thick – you’ll know if it is because the mixture will have a hard time blending – add another tablespoon of oil and continue to blend until you have a thick creamy sauce.

  • Flour either the counter top or a large cutting board. Roll the dough out to approximately 14 inches diameter. Allow it to rest for a few minutes.

Cook It:

  • Place the dough on a greased baking sheet if you’re using that or slide the dough directly on a pizza stone. Prebake the crust for 8 minutes.  Remove from oven and allow it to cool for a minute or two.
  • Meanwhile, add 2 tablespoons of oil to your pan. Sauté the chicken until cooked through and golden brown (approximately 8 minutes). Remove and set aside.

  • Next add the mushrooms to the same pan the chicken was sautéed in and cook until the mushrooms are golden brown.

  • Spread the pesto on the slightly cooled crust. Top with chicken, mushrooms and the remaining cheese (1/2 cup). Bake for 9 – 10 minutes or until the cheese begins to brown.
  • Serve immediately. Don’t try a photo shoot while it gets cold like I do!!

Serve It:

  • OMG…on it’s own with a beer! This is a complete meal. If you insist on serving something with it, try a tomato salad or fruit salad.
  • Change it up! If you don’t like spinach, try arugula or basil. Both will be fantastic with this recipe. You could swap it for store-bought as well. Whole-wheat pizza dough is super delish and plays so well with the spinach and mushrooms but regular white dough will work as well.

Images and Recipe – Copyright Alex Corzo 2012

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6 thoughts on “Ginger Chicken and Spinach Pesto Pizza

  1. I tried to make pizza for my friends for my birthday and I failed!!!! The dough went crazy on me and would roll out and it kept sticking. I think it was because it was too hot in the apt…but your pizza looks amazing!!! I can taste it through my computer screen! lol

    • Thank you so much!!! Head definitely has something to do with it so don’t feel bad. As for rolling out dough…I’m not the best either but here are some tips. Flour your surface and rolling pin liberally so that the dough doesn’t stick. Roll the dough into a nice ball first, then using your fingers press it out starting in the middle and start streching it into whatever shape you need. This way you get the shape is set and the rolling pin just finishes the work.6 more pizzas to go 🙂 Stay tuned!

      • Whew, ok! now I don’t feel so bad!..I put flour on everything, lol. But each attempt to roll it out ended-up with a sticky mess. So I did spread the dough with my hands and made it flatbread style. I used fig butter as the base, fresh mozzarella, proscuitto, and topped it with arugula once I took it out the oven. It was an ok first try, but I definitely know now to keep the dough at the proper temp!

  2. Reblogged this on be well-blog.com and commented:
    Getting active nutrition doesn’t have to be boring or tasteless. With fresh ingredients like those used by Aly, to make this delectable pizza, you can still achieve great health results. Your protein and complex carbs needs are met with this fun yet healthful pizza!!!

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