Thomas Hill Organics in Paso Robles, California, has a menu that's heavily influenced by seasonal harvests, changing daily based on available produce. A literal "farm-to-table" restaurant, owners Joe and Debbie Thomas envisioned it as an outlet for the vegetables grown on their 10-acre certified organic farm, and the pizzas are especially enticing.
French-born chef Julie Simon and Kenny Bigwood—aka the "pizza guy" and our guide in the kitchen—collaborate on toppings. With spring's bumper crop of carrots, Kenny created the Carrot Pizza. The pie begins with a savory base of garlic, ginger, and puréed carrots, crowned with a flavor-packed array of unusual toppings: Anaheim chilies, coconut cream, sesame seeds, cashews, toasted coconut, and cilantro.
Made without cheese or tomatoes, this carrot pie pushes the limit of most people's notion of pizza. But those willing to take a risk will reap a sweet and spicy reward.
What you'll need for one pizza:
- 6 ounces of dough (like the Cook's Illustrated Thin-Crust)
- 1 bunch of carrots, about 3 pounds
- 1-inch length fresh ginger
- 12 cloves of garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon allspice
- 1 Anaheim chile
- Handful of cilantro
- 4 tablespoons toasted coconut
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- 4 ounces coconut cream*
- 1/2 cup cashew pieces
* If you can't find coconut cream, you can reduce coconut milk by half.
This recipe will make much more carrot purée than you'll need for one pizza. Leftovers will make a great spread for crackers, breads, or even tossed with pasta or rice.