Dinners

Recipe—Shrimp and Pesto Pizza

The other day I made some homemade pesto for the first time ever. I really wanted to create an awesome pizza combination to use my pesto on and this is what I came up with, a delicious shrimp and pesto pizza. Yes it is a complete departure from your typical pizza and yet it was ahhh-mazing! It was really light and refreshing. The shrimp were cooked to perfection and went so well with the pesto. I didn’t go too crazy with the toppings. I just wanted to keep it pretty simple and it really allowed all the flavors to come through. We love making homemade pizzas during the week because they are incredibly quick and easy and usually cheaper than ordering one from your local pizza parlor. This may have just been my best homemade pizza to date!

Note: If you don’t have the time to make my homemade pesto recipe, I recommend getting the store bought kind and stirring in a splash of lemon juice. The hint of lemon really sets off the shrimp.

INGREDIENTS
1 tube Pillsbury refrigerated pizza crust
12 large raw shrimp, cleaned and peeled
salt
lemon pepper
1/2 c pesto (see my recipe here for homemade pesto)
2 c mozzarella cheese, shredded
2 thin slices red onion, cut into quarters
1 tomato, chopped
Italian seasoning

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 400º.
  • Slice your shrimp in half lengthwise. This will help them to cook quicker and will be easier to eat.
  • Season the shrimp with slat and lemon pepper and set aside.
  • Unroll the pizza dough onto a greased cookie sheet.
  • Starting at the center press, the dough out until it is your desired thickness.
  • Spread an even layer of the pesto onto your dough.
  • Top with cheese, onions, shrimp, and tomatoes.
  • Dust your pizza with Italian seasoning.
  • Bake in the oven for 12–14 minutes or until crust is a golden brown.
  • Turn on the broiler for an additional 2 minutes to given the cheese some nice golden brown spots.
  • Allow to cool for a couple of minutes before slicing.
Sauces

Recipe—Basil Pesto

I use pesto on a fairly regular basis but I have yet to ever make it on my own. I usually just buy the little tubs in the fresh pasta section at the grocery store because let’s face it, it is so much easier than making your own! Making it from scratch has certainly been on my “to do” list and since my basil plant just reached about 3 feet tall I decided to give it a try. Boy am I glad I did! No store bought pesto can ever compare and it really ended up being much easier than I ever anticipated. This pesto was so good my son and I were licking the rubber spatula! I kid you not. It was quite the site. This pesto is great with your favorite pasta, as a pizza sauce, or even as a sandwich spread. Give it a try, you will find it is completely worth it!

Note: While the pesto is best fresh you can also store it in the fridge or freezer. If you decide to do this put the pesto in an airtight container and pour a 1/2” of olive oil on the top to preserve it. It helps keep it from becoming discolored.

INGREDIENTS
6 c fresh basil leaves
4 garlic cloves
1/2 c pine nuts
1 c olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
3/4 c fresh parmesan, shredded (use the good stuff!)
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

STEPS

  • Combine the basil, garlic, pine nuts, olive oil, and lemon juice in a blender.
  • Blend until a nice thick paste is formed. You may need to stop and stir periodically. Add more olive oil if needed.
  • Add in the parmesan, salt, and pepper and blend until nice and smooth.