We eat pizza fairly often and love to experiment with different toppings. But one of my all-time favorites is – and always will be – this Pizza Margherita with Roasted Tomato Pizza Sauce.
Pizza Margherita is the quintessential, classic pizza made simply with tomato, sliced mozzarella, basil and extra-virgin olive oil. According to Wikipedia, one legend holds that Pizza Margherita was officially named in 1889 when the Royal Palace of Capodimonte commissioned the creation of a pizza in honor of the visiting Queen Margherita. Of the three pizzas created, the Queen preferred the pie swathed in the colors of the Italian flag: red (tomato), green (basil) and white (mozzarella) – and so the pizza was named after her.
I think Queen Margherita and I would have definitely been simpatico lunch companions – and I think she would have loved our version of Pizza Margherita made with our roasted tomato pizza sauce! The intense flavors of the roasted tomato pizza sauce perfectly set off the simple, fresh and classic flavors of the sliced tomatoes, mozzarella and basil.
So simple – but so incredibly good!
- 7 ounce pizza dough (see our recipe for Perfect Pizza Dough here)
- Flour for surface
- ¼ cup Roasted Tomato Pizza Sauce or your favorite sauce
- 5 slices fresh mozzarella sliced ¼ inch thick
- 5 slices fresh tomatoes sliced ¼ inch thick
- A few large basil leaves, torn
- Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
- Corn meal to coat pizza peel
- Bring dough ball to room temperature on a floured pan. Cover dough ball with plastic and a dish towel and let sit in a warm place for 30 minutes.
- On a floured surface, flatten dough to a 12-14 inch round. Cover with plastic and dish towel and let sit for another 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 500 degrees and in middle rack, place your pizza stone.
- On a pizza peel, sprinkle corn meal over surface. Lay pizza dough round onto peel.
- Carefully spread pizza sauce to ½ inch from edge without getting any on peel. Alternate mozzarella and tomato slices on top of sauce. Tear half of basil and sprinkle over top. Drizzle a little oil over the whole pizza.
- Slide pizza from peel onto the stone and set timer for 7 minutes. After 7 minutes check pizza bottom for browning with a pair of tongs and cook 1-2 more minutes only if needed.
- Remove to a cutting board and tear more basil over top. Cut and serve.
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