This week I was craving the best pizza in the world, which happens to be from one of the restaurants I miss back in Los Angeles: Pitfire Pizza. Known as “the burrata pie,” this pizza has burrata cheese, tomato sauce, wild arugula, caramelized onion, hazelnut, and pesto drizzle. If you’re having trouble visualizing this, check this out. I had never tried burrata cheese until I went to Pitfire Pizza, but it is now one of my favorite cheeses (unfortunately it’s hard to find because it’s a fresh cheese). Made from a mixture of mozzarella and cream, burrata is solid on the outside and soft and creamy on the inside. You can imagine how popular this cheese is with a name coming from “burro,” the Italian word for “butter.”
I decided to take my craving for the burrata pie and make something much more wonderful: a pesto burrata crepe. After doing a bit of research, I was surprised to learn that the three healthy ingredients I chose to feature in this recipe also happen to be aphrodisiacs (go figure!). Arugula is a leafy green vegetable that is known for its substantially high vitamin and mineral content, containing vitamin A, C, K, calcium, iron, magnesium, copper, and potassium (to name a few). I personally like the taste of arugula much better than any other green for its slightly zesty and earthy taste, so I was glad to find out that arugula has 8 times as much calcium, 5 times as much vitamin A, C, and K, and 4 times as much iron as iceberg lettuce. If you’re getting sick and tired of the same old iceberg salad, switch over to arugula (which happens to be the most potent anti-cancer food!).
Like the arugula, basil is high in vitamin A, C, calcium, potassium, iron, and magnesium. When eaten regularly, both basil and arugula can help reduce one’s risk of cancer. Luckily this recipe is loaded with basil and arugula, both full of flavor and full of nutrition.
While this recipe appears to be light, you can thank the pine nuts for making it instantly filling. Because pine nuts have monounsaturated fat (specifically pinolenic acid), they are an effective appetite suppressor. The pinolenic acid stimulates the secretion of CCK, which is a hormone produced by the intestines for signaling your brain that you’re full (Can you tell I’m taking a class about drugs and the brain?).
Try this recipe if you want something with a wonderful aroma and a surprisingly filling effect. For anyone who is also looking for a recipe idea for a romantic meal, I would highly recommend this one (especially with Valentine’s Day coming up)!
Pesto Burrata Crepes
Makes 4 crepes
15 large fresh basil leaves
1 tbsp pine nuts
2 garlic cloves, minced
¼ cup freshly grated parmesan
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup milk
½ cup water
¼ tsp salt
2 tbsp butter, melted
1 cup arugula
1 container of TJ’s burrata cheese
1 tomato, chopped
1 white onion, sliced & sautéed
To make the pesto sauce, chiffonade the basil. Pulse the basil, pine nuts, and garlic in a food processor or blender. Gradually add olive oil. Add parmesan, salt, and pepper.
To make the crepes, whisk together the flour and the eggs in a large mixing bowl. Gradually add in the milk and water, stirring to combine. Add the salt and butter and beat until smooth.
Heat a lightly oiled frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the pan, using approximately ½ cup for each crepe. Tilt the pan with a circular motion so that the batter coats the surface evenly. Cook the crepe for about 2 minutes, until the bottom is light brown. Loosen with a spatula, turn and cook the other side. Repeat for the remaining crepes.
To assemble the crepes, place the crepes best side down. Divide the arugula, burrata, tomato, and onion evenly among the crepes, placing the filling in the center of each crepe. Fold both sides of the crepe and flip over. Drizzle with pesto sauce. Microwave each crepe for 30 seconds and serve.