Dishing Up the Dirt

Fennel Sausage and Ricotta Pizza

We have been on a mad spring clean to clear out/eat everything from our chest freezer in order to make room for the upcoming farm season. This was literally the last of the pork sausage from last season and we are stoked to be reunited with our favorite farmers and ranchers this coming Saturday at the first farmers market of the 2016 season! It feels like the first day of school every year when the market re-opens and we are eagerly awaiting the chance to reconnect with our favorite farm buddies.  We know everyone has been busy gearing up for the season and it’s hopefully going to be a great year for our local shoppers and growers.

If you live near a farmers market (or even within an hour of one) I encourage you to make an effort to support the growers and ranchers near you before heading to the grocery store. I know that’s not possible for everyone, but for those of you that do have access to local produce, meat, and dairy I hope you take advantage of the accessibility.  Maybe toss out your grocery list and see what’s available at the market first before deciding what’s for dinner. Farming and ranching are both incredibly hard ways to make a living and if we can all be a little more thoughtful about where we spend our money the better. Not only is food tastier when it’s freshly harvested, but it’s pretty damn cool to shake the hand of the person who grew/raised your dinner and visa versa! Honestly, when Taylor and I sit down to dinner and sprinkle cheese on our pasta from our favorite cheese maker or grill up steaks from our friend Tim’s ranch we feel like these folks are sitting right at the dinner table with us. It’s amazing how much more connected we become to our food when we can put a face behind the meals that we eat. This is what inspires us to continue doing what we do even when we feel like quitting. Food is medicine and our community is what makes us thrive.

This recipe is a lovely combination of spicy sausage, sweet fennel and tangy ricotta cheese. It’s a simple pizza that is bursting with flavor. Taylor was pumped to have a little meat on his plate and I was stoked at how damn good our house smelled while this pie was baking. Simple, wholesome and delicious. For my vegetarian friends out there or folks who don’t have access to locally raised pork you can skip the sausage and try sautéing chickpeas in a little olive oil with some smoked paprika, garlic and salt. I think it would be a lovely alternative!

Cheers from Tumbleweed Farm!

Fennel, Sausage and Ricotta Pizza

Prep Time: 15 minutes    Cook Time: 15 minutes    Serves: 1 pizza

  • 1 ball of pizza dough
  • 3/4 pound spicy pork sausage, casings removed
  • 1 fennel bulb, cored and thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
  • 3/4 cup full fat ricotta cheese
  • 1 Tablespoon spring garlic, minced (or 1 clove of garlic)
  • 1/4 of a red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • sprinkle of salt and pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 500F. Place a pizza stone or baking sheet in the oven while it preheats.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Stir the sausage occasionally to break the sausage into small pieces. Add the sliced fennel and continue to cook until fragrant, about 3 minutes longer.
  3. Roll pizza dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Drizzle a little olive oil over the curst. Combine the ricotta and spring garlic in a bowl and whisk until well combined. Layer the sausage/fennel mixture over the pizza followed by spoonfuls of the ricotta. Top with the sliced red onion, fennel seeds and crushed red pepper flakes. Sprinkle the pizza with a tiny pinch of salt and pepper. Bake in the oven until the crust is golden and the cheese is bubbling, about 10 minutes. Slice and serve.


*Use this recipe as a guide *Adjust measurements and ingredients *Cooking times will vary from kitchen to kitchen

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2 thoughts on “Fennel Sausage and Ricotta Pizza

  1. Gabriella says:

    This pizza sounds divine! What a perfect spring dinner.

  2. Ella says:

    I absolutely adore your posts and recipes! 🙂

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