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Homemade Pizza

Trader Joe's helped make it happen
Trader Joe's helped make it happen
Kate Mulligan

I feel sorry for anyone living too far from Trader Joe's. The pizza dough there is so reasonable, so handy when going out or delivery just won't satisfy.

There are details, like preheating a pizza stone, and tossing a handful of polenta and sea salt down on the surface before resting the pie dough...but it makes all the diffence in that first bite. And that first bite determines your success.

Read about how Pizza is a uniting force for good HERE


  • One plain pizza dough (Trader Joe's)
  • 8 oz soft motzarella cheese, grated
  • 3 T Parmesean Reggiano
  • two really tasty thinly sliced tomatos, or a tomato paste tempered with a handful of crushed fresh sweet cherry tomatos
  • Several (3- 5) crushed garlic cloves, along with
  • 1 Tablespoon of fresh Rosemary leaves soaked in
  • 4 tablespoons of olive oil, (microwave 20-30 seconds to assist in the infusion)
  • 1 Tablespoon of dried Polenta
  • 1 handful of fresh Basil leaves (leaves are whole until the last minute, then sliced thinly to garnish)
  • Sea Salt 1/4 Teaspoon for the bottom of the crust and 1/2 for the infused olive oil.
  • 1 T fresh dried oregano leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dried chili flakes


  1. Remove Pizza dough from refrigerator, and from plastic to rest to room temperature on an oiled plate
  2. Place Pizza stone in middle rack of oven
  3. When temperature reaches 420 degrees, toss a handful of dried polenta and seasalt onto the surface
  4. Carefully pick up dough with both hands, and cover the pizza stone with it (evenly, as best you can)
  5. Let the dough bake on its own for five minutes, so that the pizza ingredients don't prevent it from cooking (and turning to mush)
  6. brush 1/2 the olive oil/garlic/rosemary infusion onto the dough (close door)
  7. one minute later, spread 2/3 of the grated cheese (yes, first) evenly over the pizza surface
  8. four minutes later, spoon on the tomato sauce, or thinly sliced tomatos on top of the cheese
  9. top with a handful of remaining cheese, and 3 T of grated Parmesean Reggiano cheese
  10. About twenty minutes later, you should notice the cheese bubbling, and the crust turning a golden brown
  11. Time to take it out of the oven, and place on a tempered surface, or on top of the stove,(yes the Pizza stone is lifeted out of the oven, not just the pizza!)
  12. Top pizza with crushed oregano, chili flakes,basil, and a drizzle of the remaining olive oil infusion.
  13. wait 1-2 minutes before slicing and serving. Otherwise the hot cheese will slide off the dough and drip all over the place.

A three to five year old Chianti is the wine most recommended to serve with Pizza, as Wikipedia states, "The acidity in the wines make them very flexible with food and wine pairings, particularly with Italian cuisines that feature red sauce" (see more)

Contact Kate for article recommendations or product referrals.


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