When I was asked by Sun-Maid how raisins could be added to pizza, my first thought was a Margherita pizza. But then I explored lots of other delicious ideas. I found that the right balance of salty cheese or a sprinkling of coarse salt, or a little tang from lemon or tomatoes, are enchanting contrasts with sweet raisins. Shaved zucchini adds texture and fun along with lemon zest and salty goat cheese in my Zucchini Ribbons Pizza. Sliced tomatoes, fresh basil, garlic, mozzarella and Parmesan is a typical Margarita Pizza until you add a little zip with raisins and a sprinkling of coarse salt.
Other ideas I liked were: Cheddar cheese, sliced apple and fresh cracked black pepper with raisins; caramelized onions with gorgonzola cheese, pinenuts and raisins; thinly sliced apples tossed with cinnamon sugar, Asiago cheese, walnuts and raisins on a crispy flour tortilla crust.
During hot summer weather, my favorite way to “bake” the Zucchini Ribbons and Margherita Pizzas is on a Boboli type bread crust in a covered grill on medium heat, the way Rita makes her Grilled Portobella Mushrooms. While zucchini and tomatoes are at peak season it’s a perfect time to sample these pizzas — let me know what you think!
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Zucchini Ribbons Pizza with Raisins
Makes 4 servings Prep and bake time: 25 minutes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large clove garlic, minced or pressed
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 small zucchini (about 1×7 inches)
1 11-inch or two 8-inch pre-baked pizza crusts (such as Boboli)
1/2 cup (4 ounces) crumbled feta cheese or soft goat cheese
1/3 cup Sun-Maid Natural Raisins
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon pine nuts
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Combine olive oil, garlic and lemon zest in a medium bowl.
Slide a vegetable peeler firmly along the length of the zucchini to make thin “ribbons”. (see photo below) Mix zucchini ribbons with olive oil mixture.
Crumble feta or spread goat cheese evenly over pizza crust.
Sprinkle raisins over cheese. Arrange zucchini evenly on top, lightly folding and mounding zucchini ribbons. Sprinkle with Parmesan and pine nuts.
Bake on oven rack or a baking sheet for 15-18 minutes (or in covered grill on medium heat) until cheese is melted and crust is lightly crisped.
An original recipe by Rosemary Mark for Sun-Maid Growers
Pizza photo and styling: Kelly Burgoyne