Traditional pizza is a perfect recipe, but integrating seasonal ingredients and diverse flavors into the mix gives the tried-and-true favorite more character. In this nectarine pizza with walnut pesto, tones of sweet, spice, and bitter come together seamlessly. The resulting pie is as much of a feast for the eyes as it is for the taste buds.
Nectarines and peaches are almost genetically identical, but their main difference is their skin: peaches have a fuzzy coating whereas nectarines are smooth. Nectarines are low in calories – just 44 calories per 100-gram serving – and are full of fiber, beta-carotene, vitamin C, and lutein. Nectarines are in season from May to September.
What I love most about stone fruits like nectarines is that they pair extraordinarily well with blue cheese. I am normally not a huge fan of blue cheese, but when it is prepared with a stone fruit and then baked, it suddenly becomes my favorite cheese. I love the way the two balance each other – the sweetness of the fruit cuts the bitterness of the blue cheese, and the blue cheese shepherds the fruit into savory territory. Match made in heaven!
This pizza recipe also features a rich walnut pesto that offers a dose of healthy fats (hello, walnuts and olive oil!) as well as a fragrant herbal bouquet from the basil. And just when you think this pizza recipe couldn’t get any better, balsamic comes in out of nowhere and offers sharp vinegary notes and a complex sweetness that piques the palate further, leaving not a single taste bud forgotten.
A light and unique pizza with nectarines, walnut pesto, blue cheese, and balsamic reduction.
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 2 cup fresh basil
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 whole-grain flatbreads
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 8 ounces Mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 2 nectarines, thinly sliced
- 6 ounces blue cheese, crumbled
- 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
- 1 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Into a food processor, add all off the pesto ingredients and blend until smooth.
- Place the flatbreads on parchment paper. Spread a layer of the walnut pesto evenly across both.
- Layer each bread with the Mozzarella cheese, followed by slices of the nectarines, crumbled blue cheese, and tomatoes.
- Place the pizzas into the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbling.
- While the pizzas are baking, put the balsamic vinegar and honey into a small saucepan and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, until the liquid reduces by half and resembles a syrup. Set aside in a bowl.
- Once the pizzas are finished cooking, drizzle each with the balsamic reduction.
- Serve immediately.