Monday, July 16, 2012

Goat Cheese Oven-Roasted Tomato Basil Pizza

We’ve said it before: not everyone likes tomatoes. We’ve all had the tasteless, mealy supermarket step-sister of the garden tomato. Her watery mess ruins all parties from salads to sandwiches. She makes small children cry. She crushes the dreams of hopeful dinners in a single bound.

Friends! It doesn’t have to be like this!  Even supermarket tomatoes can woo you (and the picky eaters in your life).

This post is really about pizza. But before pizza, you must have good tomatoes.

A few years ago, Deb at Smitten Kitchen changed my perspective on sub-par tomatoes indefinitely.  She suggested slow-roasting to both preserve garden tomatoes (you can freeze the roasted goodness!), and to transform the mealy, watery mess of the store-bought varietal that is mysteriously always in season. Slow roast those babies, and they become the perfect blend of succulent and tart, rich and creamy.

Oh? What’s that, you say? The tomatoes at the store are 30 cents a pound, orange-yellow, and frankensteinian? Trust me. Buy them. Buy them all. Because when your freezer stash runs out in January, you will cry.


Goat Cheese Oven-Roasted Tomato Basil Pizza

Oven Roasted Tomatoes:
3 medium tomatoes
6 cloves garlic, chopped
olive oil for drizzling
salt and pepper

Cut tomatoes into wedges (I tried to keep mine thin enough that they’d not be overwhelming on a pizza). Lay in a single layer in a foil-lined lipped baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with garlic, salt and pepper and slow roast in oven at 225 degrees for three hours. Or, if you're lazy like me, 40 minutes at 450. Since we're baking it into a pizza, it doesn't have to be perfect. But trust me; the slow-roasted ones are perfect on and in everything from pasta to pizza to eggs to salad to sandwiches. You will want to eat them in everything.

4+ oz log of goat cheese
½ c shredded white cheddar
oven roasted tomatoes
bruchette alla romana (sans the juice at the bottom of the container)
12 basil leaves

2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
2 cups bread flour
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons white sugar

In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.
In a large bowl, combine 2 cups bread flour, olive oil, salt, white sugar and the yeast mixture; stir well to combine.  Cover and rise until doubled in volume, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Turn dough out onto a greased pizza stone. Form dough into a pizza crust shape.

Cover with leftover bruchette, oven roasted tomatoes, basil, goat cheese and white cheddar. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, about 20 minutes (dough recipe says 20 minutes, mine took closer to 35. For pizza crust, better to err on the side of crispy than doughy).

Eat with a huge smile on your face.

Kristen Mrdjanov


  1. ALL veggies are better roasted. Yum. Thanks for a wonderful recipe.

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