Margherita pizza is as simple as it gets. Tangy fresh tomato sauce, basil, and thinly sliced mozzarella. And though it is pretty spectacular in the summer, when broad, floppy basil leaves are the stars of the herb garden, you can make it all year round using imported or greenhouse-grown basil from the supermarket. …
This is your big occasion to splurge on the good stuff—high quality, Italian whole peeled tomatoes; the freshest, most fragrant basil you can find; and a fruity, complex extra-virgin olive oil. After a quick buzz in the food processor, the finished sauce is bright and tangy with just a hint of basil. It’s ideal on Margherita Pizza or any other minimalist pie, where its flavors won’t be outshined by mounds of intense toppings….
A sophisticated cheeseburger pizza. That was my very first thought when I opened my eyes on Monday morning. Usually I wait until my farm stand shift to see what produce is available for Thursday night’s pie, but this week the decision was made for me, probably by a dream I can’t remember….
On Monday, as soon as I spotted a new shipment of multicolored heirloom cherry tomatoes at the farm stand, I knew exactly what pizza we’d be making this week. It’s my homage to this time of year, when tomatoes and basil are fresh and in season, and the meals we crave are the ones that take the least effort. …
Chard is by far the most eye-catching of all cooking greens—with broad, emerald or amethyst-colored leaves and celery-like stalks that range from neon pink and yellow to pale green and stark white. So when I needed something to add color to an otherwise monotone pizza of white beans, garlic, and high-quality Parmesan cheese, it was an obvious choice. …
It isn’t actually summer until the farm stand is bright with jewel-toned eggplants, zucchini, bell peppers, and tomatoes. This week, when I saw them all together in the stand’s display bins, my first thought was ratatouille, the stunning French casserole of thinly sliced or cubed summer vegetables….
Pesto is one of my favorite sauces for pizza, and this one is my go-to in spring and early summer, when scapes are in season….
Some purists argue that barbecue sauce has no place on pizza, but after one bite of the pie pictured below, which I topped with homemade Barbecue Pizza Sauce, bacon, mozzarella, garlic scapes, and sweet corn, I’m pretty sure I could get them all in my corner.
This recipe makes way more than you will need for one or even two pizzas; store the leftover sauce in the fridge and use it to make Barbecue Shredded Chicken, spoon a few tablespoons into your favorite mac and cheese recipe, or serve it as a dipping sauce for oven fries.
Barbecue Pizza Sauce (based on Martha Stewart’s Classic Barbecue Sauce)
Makes about 5 cups
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium sweet onion, minced
- 3 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons mustard powder
- 1 (28-ounce) can crushed or puréed tomatoes
- ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon molasses
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons coarse sea salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon raw honey
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and sauté it for 3 to 5 minutes or until soft and translucent, then add the garlic and sauté for just 1 minute longer until fragrant.
Add the tomato paste and mustard powder and cook, stirring constantly, for about 5 minutes. The paste should turn a dark red color. Pour in 2 cups of water along with the crushed or puréed tomatoes, molasses, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, salt, and pepper, and stir until the mixture is smooth.
Bring the sauce to a bubble, then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Stir in the honey and cumin and let the sauce simmer for 1 more hour or until it has reached the desired consistency. (If it gets too thick, thin it out with a little water; if it’s too thin, let it cook a while longer.) Taste the finished sauce and adjust with more salt, pepper, honey, or cumin as needed.
Remove the pan from the heat and let the sauce cool to room temperature, then spread it on your pizza and transfer any leftovers to an airtight container. If you have time, refrigerate the sauce overnight before using. It will get richer and more complex as the flavors have time to meld. The sauce will keep for 1 week in the fridge and 6 months in the freezer.
This is the reason I keep at least one can of crushed tomatoes on hand at all times. When you’re craving a pizza with rich tomato flavor at its base, set a pot on the stove, mince up half an onion, and start cooking the sauce while the dough rises. To save time, make the sauce in a large dutch oven instead of a saucepan; the wider surface area will cook it down faster….
This is the dough that changed our Thursday nights forever….