Up until a few years ago, it never occurred to me to make my own pizza. When you live in the New York/New Jersey area, where you can get great pizza delivered to your home for about $20, why go to the trouble of making it yourself? A friend invited us for homemade pizza one night and opened our eyes to new possibilities.
The first hurdle is pizza crust. I’m not a baker and for good reason; I like to eat what I make. Filling up on delicious homemade bread, cookies, cake, and brownies would not be kind to my waistline. Boboli sells a pre-made pizza crust that’s o.k. but in recent times I’ve come across some local and artisan crusts and flatbreads that are even better.
Toppings are where the fun begins. Make it the way you like it. Pesto, bruschetta, sliced meatballs, fresh mozzarella, and Fontina cheese are some of our favorites. My plan for this weekend’s pie starts out with pesto, fresh tomato, and Fontina. Then along comes spouse asking, “Where’s the meat?” A half package of bacon from the freezer will answer the call of the wild.
- 1 pizza crust
- ¼ cup pesto sauce
- ½ cup shredded Fontina cheese
- 2 slices of cooked bacon, chopped into ½ inch pieces
- 3 -4 Campari or plum tomatoes, sliced
- Pre-heat pizza stone or baking sheet in a 425 to 450 degree oven. (Check the baking instructions on the crust package.)
- Coat the pizza crust with pesto. (For toppings other than pesto, I like to brush the crust with olive oil, but it’s not needed with the oil-based pesto.)
- Arrange the tomatoes and bacon over the pesto.
- Top with cheese. (I buy a hunk of Fontina and use the coarse side of my hand grater for fresh shreds.)
- Slide the pie onto the pizza stone or baking sheet. (For safety sake, I put the pizza stone on a trivet, place the pie on it, then put it back in the oven.) Bake until the cheese melts, about 5 to 8 minutes.
- Serve with a sprinkle Italian herbs and shredded Parmesan cheese.
And wash it down with summer sangria!