This post is in partnership with California Grown.
I’m finding myself wanting to spend nearly every minute outside as the weather gets warmer. This feeling also includes cooking and in the case of this recipe, using the pizza oven. I love asparagus for the ease in this recipe and the chili oil takes the whole thing over the top.
There’s nothing quite like the start of the asparagus season. I feel like it’s one of the first tastes of spring. Here in California, asparagus season runs from now until early summer. It’s a labor-intensive crop that is mostly produced by multi-generational farmers.
For the asparagus in the recipe, I like slightly thicker stalks. These shave a bit easier. However, if all you have are skinny stalks, don’t bother shaving. Just trim, toss with the oil, and add to the pizza.
My Pizza Dough
I used to make a simple one-hour pizza dough. That, however, has changed with help from the cookbook Flour Water Salt Yeast. I typically do the day-of pizza dough but there are options for a few different doughs. My next project is to perfect dough from home ground flour with help from the book Flour Lab.
The Chili Oil
I love this oil for a general-use oil on roasted vegetables, eggs, or pasta. I don’t usually use parsley on pizza but with this sauce, it’s lovely. You could switch to using basil or a woody herb like rosemary.
Also, you don’t have to use crushed red pepper. If I’m making this for someone who is opposed to heat, I just leave the crushed red pepper out.
Finally, I’m leaving the actually cooking instructions fairly vague because I feel like everyone has different methods. This pizza works well in on a pizza stone in the oven. In the past few months, I purchased an Ooni pro and after a bit of learning, it makes wonderful pizza.Print
4 tablespoons olive oil
4 scallions, thinly sliced
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional- see note)
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
½ cup minced parsley
1 tablespoon lemon juice
⅛ teaspoon salt
6 to 8 thicker asparagus stalks
1 recipe or store-bought pizza dough, room temperature
2 ounces shredded gruyere
2 ounces shredded/torn mozzarella
- Preheat your oven with stone, grill, or pizza oven as needed.
- Prepare the toppings by heating a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil followed by the scallions. Cook until the scallions start to crisp up. Stir in the chili flakes and continue to cook until the scallions are crispy. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the sesame seeds, parsley, lemon juice, and salt.
- For the asparagus, Hold the untrimmed end of the asparagus and using a vegetable peeler, shave the asparagus (video here). Place the shaved asparagus in a bowl and toss with the scallion oil.
- Toss/stretch the pizza dough to the desired size and place on a pizza peel lightly coated with cornmeal. Top the dough with the asparagus and all of the oil mixture. Sprinkle with the shredded cheese and cook however you’re cooking your pizza.
Crushed red pepper: Leave out if you don’t want heat to the pizza. The sauce is just as delicious without it!