Summer Pizzas Featuring Zucchini, Tomatoes and Basil. Correction – Lots of Basil.

Tomato Pesto Pizza Pizza is my favorite food.  It’s my favorite food to make from scratch.  It’s my favorite to go out for.  Frozen pizza is even my favorite store-bought food (and one of the only ones I’m willing to eat)!  Since pizza varies so much depending on where it’s from—homemade, pizzeria, grocery store, etc.—I don’t mind eating it multiple times in a week, or even a day!  However, the rest of my family, while liking pizza a lot, even loving it, does not feel quite as strongly as I do.  Thus we make pizza about twice a month.  Which is pretty good, but I could make it a lot more often….

Last night my Young Assistant and I made three pizzas for dinner.  Here are pizzas one and two, both featuring garden-fresh pesto and produce.  I will follow up with a post soon about the third pizza.

This event also marked the first pesto-making of the season.  Well, that’s not completely true . but this was the first all-basil pesto!  My young assistant was very helpful with the making of the pesto and especially the peeling of garlic.


Wonderful Basil.  Blanch it by boiling then cooling to preserve its amazing color.

Peeling Garlic for Pesto

“Garlic doesn’t sting, does it, Dada?”  He is less fond of peeling onions. peeling garlic for pesto

Is it bad his fingernails are so dirty, I mean, he is a 4-year-old boy….
pesto ingredients in food processor

Walnuts make a great local substitute for pine nuts.

Pesto Margarita Pizza

(This style of pizza normally doesn’t have pesto, but since we had lots of basil we really wanted to feature it!)

Tomato Pesto Pizza

  • ½ large tomato, sliced into wedges
  • 5-6 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1-2 scallions or very small onions, chopped
  • 3-5 small cloves garlic, chopped
  • Fresh basil
  • 2-3 Tbs. olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Fresh mozzarella, sliced into pieces similar in size/shape to the tomato wedges
  • ¼ cup pesto
  • Pizza dough

Tomato Pesto Pizza ready to be baked

Zucchini Pesto Pizza

  • 1 small zucchini, sliced fairly thin (or 1 quarter of a huge zucchini)
  • 1-2 scallions, chopped
  • Fresh herbs (basil, thyme, oregano), chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2-3 Tbs. olive oil
  • Fresh mozzarella, sliced
  • ¼ cup pesto mixed with ¼ cup pizza sauce
  • Pizza dough

Zucchini Pesto Pizza ready to be baked

  1. Prepare the vegetables, herbs, and seasoning by mixing them together in a bowl and tossing with the olive oil.  Refrigerate until ready to top pizza with them.
  2. Stretch out the pizza dough to your preferred size and shape (typically a circle, but maybe a rectangle if that’s what fits your pan).  Try to resist the urge to use a rolling pin which will rob your pizza dough of many of the bubbles that the yeast have been hard at work creating!
  3. Spread the pesto/sauce and then arrange the rest of the ingredients on top.  You do not need your cheese to cover every square inch!  (Pizzeria secret – a sprinkle of extra salt on top of the pizza before baking).  Bake as hot as your oven will allow (I preheat to 550, then lower the heat to 500 when I put the pizza on the stone).

Zucchini Pesto Pizza Be sure to check out my dandelion greens pizza , as well as the rhubarb and asparagus pizzas .  Oh and then there’s the one with beets , which ought to be in season again!  Mmmmm, thinking about those other pizzas makes me want to make some pizza as soon as I can.   Strange that I might have to convince the rest of my family to eat it again so soon, who wouldn’t want pizza right now?!