The toppings may seem like an unlikely combination, but one bite and you’ll be a believer!
The saltiness of the sausage, the sweetness of the roasted butternut squash, and the wonderful aroma of the fresh sage. All these flavors blend perfectly together, then its all topped with a salty-sweet drizzle of thickened balsamic vinegar and a sprinkling of heat from some red pepper flakes.
Whisk up marinade and toss with the thinly sliced (1/8″) squash. Arrange on a baking sheet and bake until tender. It should only take 10-15 minutes for the squash to become tender, and it most likely won’t have a chance to brown yet. So place it under the broiler for a few minutes until it does start to brown.
That browning (also known as the Maillard reaction), starts to caramelizes the natural sugars, turning them brown, resulting in hundreds of (sweet) flavor and aromatic compounds being created. In general, browning translates into flavor.
You can always buy crema di balsamico, providing its gluten free of course. But it is so simple to make your own using regular gluten free balsamic vinegar, not to mention cheaper.
Butternut & Sausage Pizza with Balsamic Glaze
- 12 fresh sage leaves thinly sliced and soaked in oil
- 1 cup cheese shredded
- 3 oz GF sausage thinly sliced
- 2 Tbsp fresh Italian parsley minced
- ½ small butternut squash thinly sliced
- 1 Tbsp oil
- 2 tsp honey warmed
- 1 tsp GF balsamic
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
- ¼ cup GF balsamic vinegar
- In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, honey, vinegar, salt, and red pepper flakes. Add the squash and toss until well coated. Arrange squash on a single layer, on a greased or parchment lined baking sheet. Bake at 475°F for 10 minutes, or until tender. Place under the broiler for a few minutes to give it a golden color (also helps to sweeten it up as well).
- Let the fresh sage soak in a bit of oil for a few minutes, this will prevent it from burning while in the oven, as well as give it nice crispy texture.
- Prepare pizza dough as directed and place on a greased (add some cornmeal if desired for a crunchy crust) pizza stone or baking sheet. Pre-cook dough if recipe/package calls for it.
- Arrange squash pieces over dough, add sage, cheese, and sausage. Bake about 12 minutes or until crust is golden and cheese is hot.
- While pizza is cooking, make the glaze. In a small sauce pan, add vinegar and bring to a boil. Turn heat down a bit and continue on a low boil until vinegar is reduced and thick.
- Once pizza is done, remove from oven and drizzle with glaze and sprinkle with parsley and a bit more red pepper flakes if desired.