Gourmet Pizza

Arugula with Pesto, Cherry Tomatoes, Basil & Four Cheeses Pizza

    For the Pizza Crust:

1 teaspoon active dry yeast

¾ cups of warm water, not over 110 degrees

2 cups all-purpose flour

¾ teaspoon kosher salt

3 tablespoons olive oil


(Note: If you do not have a standup mixer, then mix it by hand using a wooden spoon. An electric mixer would be too difficult to use in this instance.)

Pour yeast into the warm water and allow to sit for five minutes.

Using a standup mixer first combine the flour and salt. Next, set your mixer to run at low speed and drizzle in olive oil until combined with flour. Pour in yeast and water until just combined. The dough will be sticky. Coat a mixing bowl with olive oil and form the dough into a ball. Toss the dough ball in the bowl with olive oil to coat the ball. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside for one to two hours. It is best to place bowl in the refrigerator 24 hours ahead for the best flavor.

Punch the dough down and roll out to fit your greased pan (we used a standard baking sheet). Try to avoid stretching the dough.

    For your Toppings:

1 unbaked pizza crust (as above)

2 tablespoons olive oil

Pinch Kosher salt

Pinch black pepper

Red pepper flakes

1/3 cup basil pesto

5 cloves garlic, minced

1 ½ cups red cherry tomatoes – sliced in half

1 ½ cups yellow or orange cherry tomatoes – sliced in half

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

¼ cup basil leaves, rolled and sliced thin

8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, grated

4 ounces asiago cheese, grated

½ cup parmesan reggiano cheese, grated

½ cup ricotta cheese

4 ounce fresh arugula


Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Place cut tomatoes, basil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper to taste in a medium size bowl. In small skillet, heat olive oil, add garlic and stir for one minute and remove from heat. Pour over tomatoes mixture, tossing to coat evenly. Set aside.

Tomatoes and Basil

Roll out dough very thin, dusting with flour and transfer to oiled baking sheet. Drizzle a little olive oil over dough and spread evenly. Spread pesto over dough. Sprinkle mozzarella, asiago, and parmesan reggiano evenly over pizza. With a spoon place a small amount of ricotta over the entire pizza and sprinkle with red pepper flakes to taste.

Pizza Cheese

Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until the crust is golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to rest for five minutes. Then cover top with arugula, then spoon over tomatoes mixture. Cut into squares and serve.

Bon appétit!

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