Tomato Pizza with Herbed Crust and Balsamic Drizzle
Herbed-crust pizza with fresh basil, tomatoes, mozarella, parmesan, and a balsamic drizzle
Servings: 8 slices Print Recipe
Quick and Easy Herbed Pizza Dough:
- ¼ cup warm water
- ¾ tsp sea salt
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp active dry yeast
- ¼ cup good olive oil
- 2 ¼ cups flour
- ½ cup water
- 2 cloves roasted garlic, diced (or ¾ tsp garlic powder)
- 2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 6-8 oz Mozzarella, freshly grated (regular or your favorite vegan brand)
- 3/4 cup Parmesan, freshly grated (omit to keep this pizza vegan)
- 1-1/2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
- 3-6 tomatoes, depending on size sliced
- 2 Tbsp basil chiffonade
- 2-3 tsp good olive oil
- 3 Tbsp Balsamic vinegar, for drizzling, or to taste
Activate the yeast
In a small bowl, add the warm water, salt, brown sugar, and active dry yeast. Whisk with a fork, and let it sit on top of the warming oven for about five minutes, or until the yeast has activated. (The mixture will get foamy/bubbly.)
Make the dough
In a medim size bowl, add 2 cups of flour, the diced garlic (or garlic powder), and Italian seasoning. Stir together. Now add the yeast mixture and the olive oil to the flour mixture. Stir until the dough starts to come together. It will look a little shaggy at this point.
Now add the remaining ¼ cup flour and keep mixing with a spoon or your hand. The dough will be a little dry at this point, so start adding the final ½ cup water. Go slowly, you may not need to use the whole ½ cup.
Keep adding the water and incorporating it into the dough with your hand or stirring utensil until a nice, slightly sticky dough has formed. It should stick to your hands slightly when touched. If it is sticking more than slightly to your hands, add a little more flour. If it is too dry and not sticking to your hands at all, add more water until you reach the slightly sticky consistency.
Let the dough rest
Cover the bowl with a towel, place it on top of the warm oven, and let rise for at least 10 minutes. The great thing about this dough is that it is ready to roll out in 10 minutes, but you can also just let it keep rising until you are ready to make the pizza.
Compile the pizza
After at least 10 minutes, roll or stretch the pizza dough out on an oiled cookie sheet. You can make it as thick or thin as you like. I have made this both ways and prefer the dough to be thinner, almost touching the perimeter of the cookie sheet. (So this is more of a square shaped or long oval pizza.)
With your hands or a kitchen brush, brush the top of the dough with 2-3 tsp good olive oil. Then sprinkle the 6-8 oz mozzarella (depending on how cheesy you like your pizza) over the oiled pizza dough.
Next arrange the tomatoes evenly over the pizza, followed by the Parmesan. Sprinkle the Parmesan evenly over the whole pizza.
Bake the pizza
Bake in pre-heated oven at 375 degrees for 12 minutes. After 12 minutes check on the pizza. If the crust is getting some color and the cheese is slightly browned and bubbling, it’s done! If not, bake for another 3-5 minutes, or until the cheese is slightly browned.
Take the pizza out of the oven. While it is still warm, take your balsamic vinegar and lightly drizzle it over the pizza. You can also take some olive oil and lightly drizzle that over the top of the pizza. (Start light here because a little bit goes along way, and you can always add more later!)
If your drizzle is uneven, that is ok. After you drizzle the balsamic and olive oil (if using), take the cookie sheet in your hands by each side (wearing oven mitts!) and gently rock the sheet so that the balsamic (and oil) spread evenly over the pizza. (This is just a drizzle, so the whole pizza won't be covered in the balsamic!) And it doesn’t matter if the balsamic and oil run off the pizza onto the cookie sheet. They probably will!)
Use cheese or vegan cheese if keeping this pizza vegan. If using regular cheese, freshly grated cheese is an absolute MUST! It just melts so much better than the pre-grated stuff!