My Favorite Pizza Topping: Garlicky Kale

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Now that the weather has cooled off and it’s possible for me to turn on the oven in my apartment without feeling like I’m detoxing in a sauna, I’m ready to get back to a favorite weekly ritual: Friday night pizza. Pizza is by far my favorite food, but I’m a surprisingly simple girl when it comes to how I make it. I don’t do a lot of toppings, and I rarely stray from a few key ingredients. (You may say it’s boring; I say it’s consistent.) And the one main constant for me is kale. Super, super garlicky kale.

Like Emma, I too have an obsession with kale, and in my case, that obsession means it’s the main ingredient on my pizza. I usually wash and tear up a full head of lacinato kale (enough to fill up a large mixing bowl), coat it with olive oil, press two cloves of garlic into it, massage it for a few minutes, and then season with salt and pepper.

It’s not hard to make pizza dough as we’ve shown you this week, but I sometimes take an even easier route and buy Whole Foods’ whole grain pizza dough. ($3.00 for a lump of dough, which makes two 12″ pizzas. I’m a big fan.) After rolling out the pizza dough, I coat the pizza in a few spoonfuls of pesto, pizza sauce, or olive oil (depending what I have, and the mood I’m in) then load on the kale to practically overflowing. It always looks like a ridiculous amount of kale, but as you probably know, greens cook down so much in heat, so I pile it on knowing it’ll reduce in size, brown, and get crispy. Then a light dusting of freshly grated parmesan cheese, or a few pieces of smoked mozzarella. It’s a green pizza machine.

The result? A hearty, slightly bitter yet completely satisfying vegetarian pizza, particularly when matched with a salty cheese and lots of garlicky zing.