All good Italians should have a great pizza recipe up their sleeve, and in fact, I have several. My grandfather taught me to make the best pizza dough the world has to offer when I was younger. So good in fact, that I’m keeping the recipe all to myself (at least for now).
Out of fear that Nick would hate this carb-free alternative to your standard pizza pie (he didn’t), I decided to make breadsticks on the side. Both of these components would do well on their own as appetizers and together they make a yummy and filling meal.
Expect to have a decent amount of sauce leftover, which can be used on pasta and is easily frozen for future use.
Eggplant Pizzas & Breadsticks
- 1 medium eggplant, sweated and cut into 1/2″ rounds
- 15 oz canned tomato sauce
- 2 tbsp red wine
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 3 tsp garlic powder, divided
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes, divided
- salt and pepper, to taste
- shredded mozzarella (or “pizza cheese” as it’s so often packaged)
- pepperoni (optional)
- fresh basil
- 1 package Pillsbury pizza dough
About 30-45 minutes beforehand, cut the eggplant and sweat it with salt. Instructions for this can be found here.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the eggplant rounds on a cookie sheet and bake for 7-9 minutes.
Meanwhile, get your sauce going by combining the tomato sauce, wine, oregano, 2 tsp of garlic powder, dried basil and 1/2 tsp of red pepper flakes in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and add salt and pepper as needed.
Take the eggplant out of the oven and flip the rounds over. Spread your sauce, cheese, and pepperoni over the top and place a fresh basil leaf on top. Bake for another 4-5 minutes, until the cheese is melty and the eggplant is cooked through.
While all of this is going on, roll out the pizza dough onto a lightly greased cookie sheet. Drizzle the crust with olive oil, the remaining garlic powder and red pepper flakes, and some more fresh basil. Bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and cooked through. Remove from the oven and cut into breadsticks. Serve the breadsticks with the remaining sauce for dipping.