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Pizza with Cherry Tomato and Basil Salad

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Serves 6 as an appetizer or 2 as a main course

Yields two 10-to-11-inch pizzas

  • by Joanne Weir from Wine Country Cooking

Hot pizza and cool salad makes this an "everything-in-one" pizza.

  • 1 lb. pizza dough
  • 1-1/2 cups coarsely grated smoked mozzarella cheese (or Scamorza)
  • 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 oz. yellow cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 6 oz. red cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves, cut into thin strips

Thirty minutes before baking, preheat the oven to 500°F. Place a pizza stone on the bottom rack of the oven and heat for at least 30 minutes.

On a floured surface, divide the dough into 2 pieces and form into balls. Roll 1 piece of dough into a 10- to 11-inch circle, 3/8 inch thick. Transfer to a heavily floured pizza peel. Top with half of the smoked mozzarella cheese, distributing evenly. Slide the pizza onto the pizza stone and bake until golden and crisp, 8 to 12 minutes.

In the meantime, whisk together the oil, vinegar, and garlic in a bowl to make a vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper. Add the yellow and red cherry tomatoes and toss together.

When the pizza is done, place on a platter. Top with half each of the tomatoes, vinaigrette, and basil. Serve immediately.

Make a second pizza with the remaining ingredients.

Photo: Richard Jung

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