My first experience with Brussels sprout leaves on a pizza was at Motorino, a favorite East Village spot that serves up a ridiculously addictive version with the addition of smoked pancetta and sliced garlic. Their $12 lunch special is quite possibly one of the best in town: salad + choice of one of four killer pies (Margherita, Soppressata Picante, Marinara and the aforementioned Brussels sprouts). My stomach is growling just thinking about it!
Remember our little cake making party? Well, we couldn't very well just have cake that day, could we! (Well, maybe we could have. ;)) To avoid going into sugar shock, we rounded out our meal with a delectably vegetarian version of Motorino's pizza. It's allll about the lemon here, folks. When the heat hits thinly sliced citrus, a bit of magic happens. Crunchy leaves make for gorgeous presentation and the use of whole wheat dough adds a bit of heft to an otherwise "light" pizza. Pre-made doughs are always convenient, but if you have even just an hour to spare, here's a trusted pizza dough recipe I often turn to, courtesy of Smitten Kitchen.
Brussels Sprout-Lemon Pizza
Courtesy of Martha Stewart Living, March 2012
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 pound store-bought pizza dough
3 ounces lightly salted fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
1 1/2 ounces finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese (about 2/3 cup)
3 cups packed brussels sprout leaves (from about 1/2 pound)
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
5 paper-thin lemon slices, cut into half-moons (from 1/2 lemon)
Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Brush a 12-inch cast-iron skillet with 1 teaspoon oil. Press dough flat in skillet, spreading to edge (if it retracts, let rest 5 minutes before continuing). Brush a 1-inch border around edge with 1 teaspoon oil.
Scatter mozzarella and half the Pecorino evenly over dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border around edge.
Toss brussels sprouts with remaining Pecorino, remaining 2 teaspoons oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Scatter sprout mixture over cheeses, and top with lemon.
Cook over medium-high heat until bottom is golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to oven, and bake until edges of sprouts start to char, edge of crust is golden, and dough is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Season with pepper.