For the sauce:
1¼ cups drained canned whole tomatoes, liquid reserved*
1 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. minced onion
2 tsp. tomato paste
1 clove garlic, minced
½ tsp. red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper, to taste
¼ cup heavy cream
Pizza dough for 1 large pizza (regular or whole grain)
Olive oil, for brushing
4-6 oz. mozzarella cheese, shredded**
1-2 oz. Parmesan, grated
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, roasted (small romas also work well)
¼-½ cup fresh basil, coarsely chopped
- step 1: Show Images
To make the sauce, add the tomatoes to a blender or food processor. Puree until smooth, adding a bit of the reserved liquid if necessary to smooth the mixture out. Melt the butter in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook about 1 minute, until it begins to soften. Stir in the tomato paste, garlic and red pepper flakes and mix just until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the tomato mixture, lower the heat to a simmer, and cook about 5-8 minutes, until the sauce is slightly thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cream.
- step 2: Show Images
To make the pizza, increase the oven temperature to 500˚ F and preheat a pizza stone for at least 30 minutes. Roll out the pizza dough into a 12-14 inch round. Lightly brush the perimeter of the dough with olive oil. Spread with an even layer of the tomato cream sauce. (You may have a little extra. Never fear, it makes a perfect dipping sauce for the crusts.) Sprinkle the mozzarella in an even layer over the sauce, and sprinkle the Parmesan over that. Dot the oven roasted tomatoes evenly over the cheese.
- step 3: Show Images
Transfer the pizza to the preheated pizza stone and bake until the cheese is melted and bubbling and the crust is lightly browned, about 10-12 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the chopped basil over the top of the pizza. Let cool slightly before slicing and serving.
- step 4: Show Images
*I know this is kind of an annoying measurement since it uses part of a can. Sorry. But, you can increase the batch to compensate and use as a dipping sauce or, you know, eating with a spoon.
**For best results, always use freshly shredded cheese. Pre-shredded cheese comes coated in things such as flour or cornstarch to prevent clumping and results in an unpleasant, gritty texture when melted.