Updated: May 17, 2022
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Last year before I knew I would be blessed with another baby, I provided cooking classes in our community for the children. We had so much fun and learned a lot from each other. The parents I think had a great time as well. The recipes that I chose for the class were easy enough, but at the same time had to be yummy in order to create excitement about making it. We also made everything from scratch, and why not? For some recipes we even made some of the ingredients.
This pizza recipe is delicious and very nutritious. The sourdough crust is made with whole wheat flour (I freshly grind it, oh yes!), and the sauce is so yummy and good for your gut, I promise you will want to eat it as it is. By the way, any extra leftovers of this yummy sauce will make any boring protein sing. Topped with goat cheese, sliced green apples, red onion, arugula, and drizzled with olive oil, makes this an exceptional pizza feast!!! Doesn't it sound great?
With spring here, I start to crave more green veggies and fruits. One of my favorite spring-summer delights has always been pizza. I have been on a mission to create a recipe combining veggies with fruit plus have it be something that the children love to eat and also have good health benefits.
What do I like about this Pizza?
This pizza is very flavorful, and has a delicious, predigested crust, and yes sourdough crust is much better for you. Please, visit this page to find out more about sourdough and its benefits. Also, here are other fun recipes using sourdough starter.
Feeding my family healthy is my job and pizza is one of the foods most people don't consider to be healthy eating. But I'm telling you that IT IS. Plus, the sauce with veggies sneaked in is perfect for picky eaters. Leeks are a wonderful addition for the rich in probiotic crust, because leeks are very high in inulin fiber (great prebiotic, food for good bacteria to grow). Keeping your gut happy is a beautiful investment into your health generally.
What is so good about this white sauce?
It's yummy and can be used for chicken, fish, etc. I love to have any leftovers of this sauce in my fridge, for adding it to a chicken breast turns the meat from boring to soaring! I promise. Plus, this is the healthiest white pizza sauce you have ever tried. Each ingredient in this sauce is good for you.
Crème fraiche (fermented cream), or mascarpone would be my second choice.
Leeks, look for fresh vibrant color.
Onion, regular onion.
Garlic, in the video I used young garlic, but if you can't find it, use a few cloves of regular garlic.
Herbs, fresh oregano, thyme, and basil for that's what I found in my garden.
Leeks are one of the top inulin rich vegetables.
The leek is a sister plant to onions and garlic, and like those incredible nutrient-rich foods, leeks offer a whole host of health benefits. They are high in prebiotic inulin fiber and vitamins A, C, and K. Leeks promote healthy gut bacteria and help in the breakdown of fat. They contain a good amount of folate in each serving, which has long been known to be a key component of a healthy pregnancy. The sulfur-containing compounds in leeks may also naturally reduce bad cholesterol levels, which is especially important if you’re at risk for heart disease.
These crunchy, firm veggies have a mild taste that is very similar to onions and can be used in any recipe. In my kitchen I use them in so many ways, like a topping for pizza, a base for some sauces, making puree and adding them to mashed potatoes, soups, etc.
A while ago I posted recipes where I used leeks, please check them out here:
Notes on how to clean leeks.
When it comes to cleaning leeks the process can be tricky since leeks grow in sandy soil and they naturally trap a lot of dirt.
First, cut the root from the leek, the white part with only a little light green color, and discard everything else.
Then, slice lengthwise.
After chopping the leeks, put them in a bowl of cold running water and use your hands to agitate the water and remove any additional dirt.
How to freeze extra baked pizza?
After reaching room temperature, I usually wrap each slice individually and freeze them for up to one month and use as an emergency lunch or dinner.
Leave out the arugula if you are planning to freeze.
Do I Have to Use Crème Fraiche?
You can use mascarpone cheese instead of crème fraiche. I grew up in Ukraine with crème fraiche (cultured cream), and that's what I prefer to use in most of my cooking. It has as light tartness and more complex flavor profile compared to heavy cream. As you know, I truly believe fermented food is magic food, so using crème fraiche is my first choice, but you can easily use heavy cream instead.
Where Can I Buy Crème Fraiche?
Any health store or international market should carry it. Trader Joe's and Whole Foods will have it as well.
How to make a Crème Fraiche?
There are many ways to make crème fraiche. Since I'm always making kefir,
The good news is that anyone can make crème fraiche and there are a few short cut options.
1. Take one small carton of good quality heavy cream and pour into a saucepan.
2. Heat the cream to 95-105F. Take off of the heat.
3. Add 1/4 cup of kefir and stir.
4. Cover with a lid. Leave at room temperature for 12 hours.
5. Enjoy, for the use of this is endless, since you can substitute your regular sour cream and heavy cream with crème fraiche. Let's not forget about the process of fermentation that gives you good bacteria. Your gut will be thankful.
Let's do it...
Prep time: 5 minutes
Waiting time: 8-12 hours
Baking time: 8 minutes
Total time: 8-9 hours
Yield: 4 12-inch pizzas
Author: Inna of innichkachef.com
1⅓ cups sourdough starter (ripe and active)
2 cups water or whey, room temperature
1¾ cups whole wheat flour
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons pink salt
White Sauce Ingredients
1 big onion
1 head of garlic (I used young garlic in the video)
1 cup crème fraiche or mascarpone
1 cup shredded parmesan
1 cup fresh chopped herbs (oregano, thyme, basil)
1-2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup water (if needed, to create the perfect sauce consistency)
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 Tablespoon butter
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1-pound fresh goat cheese
2 cups arugula
1/2 red onion, sliced
1 cup sliced green apple
1 cup shredded parmesan
Olive oil for drizzling
8 hours before you are planning to make pizza, make the dough. I usually make it in the morning, and it is ready by dinner time, or I leave it overnight in the fridge if I'm making pizza for lunch. Mix water, starter (ripe and active) and salt in an electric mixing bowl using the hook attachment and mix for a minute or until everything becomes one consistency.
2. Add flours and mix on medium speed for two minutes, or until the dough releases itself from the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel. Let the dough sit at room temperature for 6-8 hours or until it doubles in size.
3. Using a dough cutter, divide it into 4 pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and place on a floured baking sheet or cutting board. Cover again with a damp kitchen towel and leave it to rest.
4. Preheat your oven to 500F with the pizza stone already inside so that it preheats with the oven.
5. To make the sauce use a pot with a heavy bottom or a Dutch oven (that's what I used in the video). Add olive oil and butter allowing it to melt. Add chopped onion, salt and red pepper flakes. Stir and let cook on low heat for a few minutes. Chop your garlic and add to the pot as well.
6. Chop the leeks (white part only) and wash well. See the notes above on how to do this correctly because leeks usually hold a lot of dirt. Add to the pot, stir and let cook for a few minutes.
7. Add crème fraiche, then cover the pot with a lid. Cook for a minute or so, now add the chopped fresh herbs and the shredded parmesan cheese. Stir, cover and cook for another minute.
8. Puree the sauce with a stick blender and be careful so that the hot sauce doesn't splash. Sample and adjust the taste by adding salt if needed. Also, add one or two tablespoons of lemon juice and a little bit of water if you feel like the consistency of the sauce is a little bit too thick. Keep in mind that the sauce will become thicker as it cools down. Remove the sauce from the stove and leave it on the counter to cool down.
9. Roll out the pizza dough one ball at the time on a well-floured surface. Add 3 tablespoons of sauce on each rolled dough and cover evenly.
10. Sprinkle on the onion, apple, goat cheese and parmesan. Slide one pizza onto the pizza stone and bake for about 10 minutes or until you like. Repeat until you have prepared and baked all the pizzas.
11. After removing the pizza from the oven, drizzle it with a little bit of olive oil and add more parmesan. Last but not least, garnish the pizza with arugula, (I like to add a little bit of olive oil on the arugula to make it shiny).
12. Cut and serve immediately. Enjoy with good company and a nice glass of wine!