New York style pizza with basil cilantro pesto, goat cheese, Kalamata olives and fresh arugula

by Stevie on August 26, 2010

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New York style pizza with cilantro basil pesto, goat cheese, Kalamata olives and fresh arugula

I made this pizza for company last week. I guess I was thinking about it after reading Heavenly’s post about Lombardi’s Pizza in New York. Ah, New York!

Callie and Ellie were visiting from Virginia. Ellie is a real fan of Italian food. On that particular day, we were taking a break from sightseeing and revitalizing ourselves over several games of Hearts and bottles of Purple Haze (the raspberry wheat beer, not weed!) Making Hegui’s pizza dough was a snap. I used dry active yeast instead of the moist. If you don’t have a leisurely afternoon of casual home-entertainment in which to let your dough rise, you can always go for the store bought kind. The topping idea was an “invention” inspired by some leftover herbs. I had a lot of cilantro and basil lying around: really this is just a cilantro-added version of basil pesto American style.

I had enough dough for two. For the second, Hegui made the tomato sauce from his last pizza post to which I added shredded mozzarella, sautéed crimini mushrooms and fresh basil leaves tossed over on top after we pulled it from the oven (Like Hegui’s “pizza number 1” but with mushrooms instead of olives). Both versions were yummy. The “green” one was fresh, tangy and almost tasted crisp, with the cheese smoothing out and balancing the flavors. The “red” tomato version was hearty and earthy.

New York style pizza with basil cilantro pesto, goat cheese, Kalamata olives and fresh arugula

For the dough:

Either start with pre-made dough or you can follow Hegui’s recipe on this link. I did the later.

For the cilantro basil pesto:

1 medium bunch cilantro
1 medium bunch basil
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp Kosher salt
black and red pepper to taste
juice of one lemon
olive oil
¼ cup parmesan cheese
¼ cup almonds

Put all ingredients except cheese and nuts in food processor. Process until smooth. You’ll have to gradually add olive oil to get the right consistency. I think that I used about a quarter cup. Next process in nuts; then, the cheese.

To prepare pizza:

1 pizza dough (above)
cilantro basil pesto (above)
¼ cup goat cheese (I used an inexpensive chèvre)
12 Kalamata olives, pitted and cut in halves
1 small bunch arugula

Pre-heat oven with pizza stone to 485F.

Stretch pizza to desired shape being sure to leave some extra dough to form a crust. Cover a wooden board with corn meal. Place dough on top. Spread with cilantro basil pesto. Dot with goat cheese. Sprinkle with olives. Gently slide from board to pizza stone. Bake 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from oven and decorate with fresh arugula.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Heavenly Housewife August 26, 2010 at 2:53 pm

Oh you did such a beautiful job with this. Lovely strong flavours, I bet this was awesome. Thank you so much for the mention.
*kisses* HH

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