When I browsing the most important part of the Sunday paper [read: I dug through the paper for the Target weekly] I saw an ad about candy corn. Candy corn! I guess it is nearly mid-October, after all, so although I’m not that into candy corn, I am into being festive for holidays. Halloween is fast approaching, and so why not plan a fun dish to serve at my imaginary Halloween party with my dogs and all my imaginary friends.
I thought that candy corn kind of looked like an awkward piece of pizza. And then I decided that I should make a candy-corn inspired pizza! And then I was like OMG BEST IDEA EVER! And declared myself a genius before I spent roughly 40 seconds trying to use a spoon to cut my veggie burger.
I next spent an entire hour long walk with Millie dreaming up all the different ways I could make this candy corn themed pizza. My imagination was literally running wild. Sure, I could do something boring like use different artificially colored yellow and orange and white cheeses, but that just isn’t my style now is it? I wanted to make something new, different, and delicious. So that’s just what I did.
Then I went to make the pizza and realized we have no pizza pan in this house. That’s awkward. I guess it got lost or thrown out when my mom moved. I got a lil sad and then decided that life would move on, and I made it a tart instead. Next time, pizza.
The sauce is sweet-spicy and definitely different from your classic red [in a good way]. The roasted onions take on that sweet roasted oniony flavor which tempers the spicy pepper nicely. Potatoes on pizza are ALWAYS a life choice, and as sweet potatoes are my favorite kind of potatoes and also happen to be orange, they made their way on the pizza. The white tip is roasted onions. If I had cauliflower on hand, it would have gone on too. Yums.
If you want to add cheese, add it under the toppings. This is totally allowed and actually makes for a more interesting taste/flavor combo. In fact, I believe once you start baking your cheese under your toppings on pizza you will never look back. Bless u.
The key to this pizza is a little forethought: just throw all the stuff in the oven and let it roast. Meanwhile make the polenta crust, assemble it all together, and slice so it has yellow-orange-white from crust-to-tip so each slice sort of resembles a piece of candy corn. Right? Right. Cheers to festive food that isn’t full of crap! Because enough candy will come on Halloween :-).
Candy Corn Inspired Veggie Tart: Corn Crust, Roasted Pepper Sauce, with Roasted Onions, Sweet Potatoes & Peppers
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 90 minutes total
Ingredients – Pizza Crust:
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 2 1/4 cup water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds or flaxseed, or an egg
Ingredients – Sauce:
- 1 cup red bell peppers
- 1/2 cup onions
- 1 cup orange or yellow bell peppers
- 1 cup tomatoes (fresh or canned)
- 1 garlic clove
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon curry powder or cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
Ingredients – Toppings:
- 1 large yellow bell pepper, cubed
- 1 large sweet potato, thinly sliced
- 5-6 validena onions
- olive oil for drizzling
- feta crumbles or nutritional yeast for sprinkling (optional)
- balsamic glaze (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Farhenheit. Chop red bell peppers, onions, orange bell peppers, and validena onions. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and place in the oven until vegetables are roasted and slightly browned, 20-30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, make crust by combing water, cornmeal, and salt in a medium saucepan on the stove at medium heat. Whisk constantly until thickens, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and simmer for another 4-8 minutes until thick and dough-like.
3. Remove vegetables from oven. Place orange bell pepper, onions (reserve several validena onions for garnish), red bell pepper, tomato, garlic clove, olive oil, curry powder, and salt in a food processor. Pulse until a sauce is formed.
4. Peel sweet potato and slice into thin coins, or slice on a madeline. Dice yellow bell pepper.
5. Grease a pizza dish or pie dish and thinly and evenly spread a thin layer of cornmeal crust.
6. Top crust with a layer of sauce.
7. Garnish with a layer of sweet potatoes.
8. Top with more sweet potatoes in the center layer, yellow bell peppers on the outside, and onions or cauliflower in the middle.
9. Brush lightly with olive oil and sprinkle sea salt.
10. Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit until crust is crispy and vegetables are roasted, 25-30 minutes.
11. Remove from oven and sprinkle with goat cheese, feta cheese, or nutritional yeas, and/or balsamic glaze (to make balsamic glaze, simply slowly cook balsamic on the stovetop until thickened to the consistency of maple syrup, while stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. it creates a delightful, sweet, sticky version of balsamic vinegar!)