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Cherry Tomato Pizza Margherita

Cherry Tomato Pizza Margherita

First of all, can I say how much I LOVE daylight savings time? Sure, it’s been 3 weeks and I’m still having trouble waking up in the morning, but the sheer fact that I can take a picture of dinner in natural light is enough to make me giddy. Taylor thinks I’m nuts. But that’s what you get when you’re married to a food blogger.

This pizza is so simple, yet so delicious. And I know it would be even better with a homemade pizza crust (yes, I admit, we bought some. So kill me). A little doughy, but it’ll do in a pinch.

We tried out the package of heirloom cherry tomatoes from Trader Joe’s, which made for a gorgeous stained glass effect on the pizza.

The little buggers gave off a lot of juice when I crushed them after a quick cook. While the recipe makes no mention of extra fluids, I drained off as much as I could, and just used the squeezed skins and pulp that was left. I’d definitely suggest doing this, otherwise you’re going to end up with one soggy-bottomed pizza.

This pizza is going to be even better with fresh ripe tomatoes from our patio garden (and I hope I’m not jinxing myself by saying that now, but if all goes well, we will have wild cherry and green zebra heirloom tomatoes come summer!)

Cherry Tomato Pizza Margherita

Makes 3-4 servings. Recipe from Bon Appetit.


14 oz. premade refrigerated pizza dough
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
12 oz. cherry tomatoes, stemmed
1 garlic clove, pressed
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds, coarsely crushed in plastic bag
1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
8 ounces whole-milk mozzarella, diced
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil leaves plus small leaves for garnish


Position rack in top third of oven and preheat to 425°F. Unroll dough on heavy large baking sheet; pull to about 12x8-inch rectangle, pinching any tears to seal. Fold over edge of dough to make border.

Heat large skillet over high heat 2 minutes. Add oil, then tomatoes; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sauté until tomatoes are charred and beginning to break down, about 5 minutes. Transfer to large bowl. Mix in garlic, fennel, and crushed red pepper. Using back of fork, crush tomatoes in bowl, leaving large chunks intact. Season mixture with salt and pepper. Toss cheeses and chopped basil in medium bowl.

Sprinkle cheese mixture evenly over dough, right up to border. Spoon on tomato mixture in dollops, leaving some cheese uncovered. Bake pizza until crust is crisp and brown, 25 to 30 minutes.

Loosen pizza with metal spatula and slide onto board. Garnish with basil leaves.

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25 CommentsLeave a Comment →

  1. 1
    Posted On March 26, 2010 at 11:45 am

    beautiful and delish. a great spring treat. love it!


  2. 2
    Posted On March 26, 2010 at 12:29 pm

    My husband thinks it’s hilarious that I’m excited about Daylight Savings Time because it gives me a chance to photograph in natural light.

    I can’t wait for the local tomatoes to start coming in so I can use them on fresh pizza again!


  3. 3
    Posted On March 26, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    Gorgeous tomatoes!!

    I’m crossing my fingers as well to get a good tomato crop this year. A little nervous with all of the bizarre weather we’ve had this winter, but hopefully it will be a normal-ish summer! :)


  4. 4
    Posted On March 26, 2010 at 12:40 pm

    This is the kind of pizza I love. I love cooked tomatos. I will make this for dinner this weekend! Thank you.


  5. 5
    Posted On March 26, 2010 at 12:53 pm

    looks scrumptious :)


  6. 6
    Posted On March 26, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    This looks great! If only I could convince my husband that tomatoes are a suitable pizza topping :)

    I’ll be linking to this at Foodwhirl today !


  7. 7
    Posted On March 26, 2010 at 5:10 pm

    I saw those little tomatoes at our local Trader Joes and thought about getting them just for a salad. I think a pizza is a much better idea!


  8. 8
    Posted On March 27, 2010 at 9:50 am

    Gorgeous pizza! I love all of the tomatoes!


  9. 9
    Posted On March 27, 2010 at 12:23 pm

    I simply love the colors of those tomatoes! And you’re not alone–the thought of being able to get a good shot of what I cook for dinner gets me giddy too! thank god for summer being just around the corner…


  10. 10
    Posted On March 27, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    The cherry tomatoes give this kind of a Sicilian twist! GREG


  11. 11
    Posted On March 27, 2010 at 9:30 pm

    I know! I love Daylight Savings Time. I never had an opinion on time changes until I started photographing food haha. Your pizza looks absolutely AMAZING!! It really is. I love how colorful the tomatoes are.


  12. 12
    Posted On March 27, 2010 at 10:24 pm

    Ooh, the colorful tomatoes make such a handsome pizza! Definitely must try some fennel seeds on my next pizza– they seem like a fresh companion to tomatoes. Good luck with your gardening!


  13. 13
    Posted On March 28, 2010 at 8:41 am

    This looks so delicious. I especially like the way your dough is so perfectly formed. I know it’s store bought, but still very enticing…


  14. 14
    Posted On March 28, 2010 at 11:40 am

    This looks so perfectly delicious!


  15. 15
    Posted On March 29, 2010 at 10:53 am

    I love the heirloom cherry tomatoes from Trader Joes. I bought some last week and was so excited to see them back in season! Summer’s almost here!


  16. 16
    Posted On March 29, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    I love those tomatoes! I’ll have to look for them next time I’m at TJ’s… even just for snacking on :) I was thinking this week that we need to make some pizza at my house sometime soon… maybe this was the final push I needed!


  17. 17
    Posted On March 29, 2010 at 5:28 pm

    Ah! This makes me long for the sweet tomatoes of August! Nonetheless, it’s good to know I can find a fitting substitute if my yearning heart desires it. Roasting heirloom cherry tomatoes brings out the absolute best in them — so I can only guess this pizza was beyond compare.


  18. 18
    Posted On March 30, 2010 at 7:56 am

    This looks perfect! I love this type of pizza, simple and rustic and delicious :)


  19. 19
    Posted On March 30, 2010 at 4:04 pm

    Good looking pizza… love the tomatoes


  20. 20
    Posted On March 31, 2010 at 8:43 am

    Agreed … lovin’ some natural daylight. This pizza looks fantastic.


  21. 21
    Posted On April 1, 2010 at 1:27 am

    Love the use of coloured cherry tomatoes – very cute!!!


  22. 22
    Posted On April 5, 2010 at 11:38 pm

    Wow! Yours turned out way more presentable than mine! Mmmm . . .


  23. 23
    Posted On April 6, 2010 at 8:49 am

    I’m sure it would have been just as nice with all red tomatoes, but looks so much more like Spring with all the colors. I love when food is not only yummy but also pretty.


  24. 24
    Posted On April 7, 2010 at 11:30 pm

    Love the idea with heirloom cherry tomatoes!!! Makes the pizza look so special. I will definitely try it next time! Congrats on the Bon Appetit mention!


  25. 25
    Jeff Davies
    Posted On July 8, 2010 at 7:00 am

    Looks Lush, I’m gonna stuff my face with this at the weekend. AND I’M NOT SHARING! I will pass this recipe onto my friend Jennie O’Reilly who thinks she’s a better cook than me, but she’s not! ha ha x


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