I got the inspiration for this recipe from the very creative Neil Roake and his latest book ‘Taste Freedom‘ which I have just read and thoroughly enjoyed.
I made quite a few changes to the original recipe, adding a bit and leaving out other things.
I am mad about beetroot and when it is roasted, it turns into the perfect version of itself. The fact that I only paid R5 for a bag of 7 medium bulbs is truly the cherry on the top with regard to this vegetable.
So this is what I did to make a ‘sauce’ base for the pizza / flat bread.
Peel and quarter the beetroot. You may as well make a whole lot as what you don’t use to top the bread, you eat on salads or in sandwiches over the next few days. So you will need roughly one and a half beetroot per large flat bread.
I drizzled the beets with olive oil in a roasting pan and I generously seasoned with The Smoking Shed rosemary and coriander smoked salt blend. I then roasted in a 200 degree oven for about 40 minutes. I also made this the day before.
When its cooled I used my hand blender and puree the beetroot with a squeeze of lemon juice and a few glugs of olive oil. I used part parmesan infused olive oil from Willow Creek, and part just plain EVOO. In Neil’s recipe, he adds garlic cloves and thyme to the mix, which would be very nice.
To prepare the Zucchini, slice into ribbons using a potato peeler and toss in a bowl with olive oil to coat. Fry the slices briefly on a hot griddle pan. One side only will be sufficient to take the raw edge off and give the pretty stripes desired.
As far as the base goes, I cheated here and bought ready-made bread dough from my local Pick n Pay bakery. I got 1 kg of ciabatta dough which gave it a slightly chewy texture. I think any white bread dough will work well. You will need about 250- 300gms of dough to make a large flatbread. I added a teaspoon of The Smoking Shed smoked red pepper sprinkle to give it another interesting flavour dimension. Knead the red pepper into the dough and then roll out. I quite like an irregular shape as it makes the flat bread look a bit rustic. I baked on baking paper on a baking tray.
So once the dough is rolled out start assembling the bread. Spread the beetroot paste over the base, dot with chunks of goats cheese and lay down the grilled zucchini slices. I baked in a hot oven (200 C) for 10 minutes.
To serve I scattered over fresh basil leaves (Neil also suggested fresh mint) ,drizzled generously with EVOO and I sprinkled over a few toasted pine nuts and sea salt flakes.
I simply loved the taste combinations here, sweet and smokey marrying perfectly with the distinctive and creamy goats cheese.