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Pesto turkey pizza

Your leftover turkey lives to feed again in this pesto sauced pizza.
Your leftover turkey lives to feed again in this pesto sauced pizza.
Curt Guillory

Using leftovers from the holidays can be, well...let's say uninspiring at best. Adding just a little imagination, some creativity, and a healthy dose of fearlessness can transform those leftovers into meals your family will look forward to more than the original dinner.

A well roasted turkey provides the perfect meat for a pizza. Meats used in pizza are either pre-cooked, or cured because of the pizza’s very fast, high temperature cooking.

So if we take our properly cooled, well-seasoned turkey, dice the meat, and get it playing around with some pesto and a great crust we will have an incredible pizza that no pizza lover can walk away from.

I understand that pesto, tomatoes, and bell peppers are summer vegetables, but thanks to modern growing techniques we have access to these ingredients year around.

Note: Instead of trying to make fresh pesto, pick up a jar or two of Classico prepared pesto. It’s delicious, your welcome.

Note: Using Fleishmann’s Pizza Crust Yeast mean no rising time. That’s right, no rising time.

Yield: 3 Large Pizzas

Ingredients for crust:

  • 6¾C Unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 2pkgs. Fleishmann’s Pizza Crust Yeast
  • 2½tspn Sugar
  • 1½tbsp Kosher salt
  • 2¾C Warm water
  • 1tbsp Olive oil

Ingredients for toppings:

  • 1-1½lbs Roasted turkey (diced)
  • 2jars Classico pesto
  • 1lg White onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1red bell pepper Seeded and sliced
  • 1yellow bell pepper Seeded and sliced
  • 1 orange bell pepper Seeded and sliced
  • 6 Tomatoes (thick sliced)
  • ½lb. Baby bella mushrooms
  • 5-6C Colby jack cheese (finely shredded)
  • 1lb. Provolone cheese

Pizza crust method:

Note: If all of the pizza dough is not needed, simply freeze the unused portion.

Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir to combine.

Add the olive oil to the water and slow add to running mixer.

Mix until the dough forms a ball, then knead for an additional two minutes.

Pizza method:

Preheat oven to 500°

Form 1lb of dough into a 14-15″ circle using hands or rolling pin, or a combination of the two.

Place the dough into a pizza pan.

Spread 3 tbsp of pesto on the dough, and I don’t mean the tablespoons that you measure with. I mean the tablespoons you eat gumbo with.

Place 5-6 rounds of provolone on the pesto.

Top with a combination of vegetables.

Finish with 2C of shredded cheese.

Bake for 10-12 minutes or until light charring is seen on the crust.

Slice and serve immediately.

A pizza crust is a blank canvas as for as cooking is concerned. The above is just a suggestion, by all means go crazy. Have your way with that pizza crust. Want to throw some of that leftover green bean casserole on there? I won’t tell.

Stay hungry.