This peaches and cream pizza highlights the stone fruit's savory side, pairing it with fresh herbs, aged goat cheese, and heavy cream.
John has a strict no-sweet-things-on-the-dinner-plate policy. When I asked him to elaborate on this years ago, I believe his exact words were, "I just don't like mixing business and pleasure when it comes to food."
But that doesn't mean I won't slip some chopped dried apricots into our grain salads, serve up tacos with pineapple salsa, or top pizzas with whatever fresh fruit is in season. Marriage is about compromise, after all. And testing the limits of John's mealtime policy has resulted in some of the best recipes I've ever created—like this peaches and cream pizza, a savory spin on one of my favorite desserts, featuring tangy, fresh peaches, aged goat cheese, heavy cream, and a finishing touch of sliced lemon balm and basil leaves. (Which, by the way, he rated "one of the best pizzas I've ever had."
Peg: 1, John's dinner plate policy: 0.)
I opted for basil and lemon balm in this version because that's what I had growing in the garden, but lemon verbena or mint would work equally as well. And whatever you do, put in the extra effort to seek out locally grown, ripe-but-not-overripe peaches. Their flavor will be more intense than typical grocery store varieties, so it won't be overpowered by the goat cheese and black pepper.
Looking for more peach pizza recipes? I've totally got you covered:
- Fresh Tomato and Peach Pizza with Herbed Cream Sauce
- Peach Pizza with Ricotta and Prosciutto
- Stone Fruit Crisp Pizza
Savory Peaches and Cream Pizza with Fresh Herbs and Aged Goat Cheese
- Rolling pin (optional)
- Large rimmed baking sheet or baking stone/steel
- Pizza peel (optional)
- 1 (14- to 16-ounce) ball pizza dough
- Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing the dough
- 1 pound fresh ripe peaches, pitted and thinly sliced
- ⅔ cup shredded aged goat cheese or ricotta salata
- ¼ cup heavy cream, divided
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Kosher salt or flaky sea salt
- 1 to 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil and/or lemon balm or mint leaves
- Preheat the oven to 500°F (if using a baking sheet) or as high as it will go (if using a baking stone/steel; place the stone/steel in the bottom third of the oven before you start preheating). Let the oven preheat for at least 30 minutes. Then, if you’re using a baking stone or steel, switch the oven to Broil on high.
- Stretch or roll out your dough to a 12- to 14-inch circle, then transfer it to an oiled or parchment-lined baking sheet or a lightly floured pizza peel (if using a baking stone/steel).
- Brush the dough lightly with olive oil, making sure to get it all the way to the edges. Arrange the peach slices on top in concentric circles, keeping them in a single layer. Scatter on the shredded cheese, drizzle on half of the cream, and season with a few grinds of black pepper and a pinch or two of salt.
- Transfer the pizza to the oven and bake until the crust is golden and the cheese has browned in spots—8 to 10 minutes on the baking sheet, 6 to 8 minutes on the baking stone/steel.
- Remove the pizza from the oven and immediately drizzle on the remaining cream. Let it sit for 5 minutes, then season with a little more salt and sprinkle the sliced herbs over top; slice and serve.