photo by Mark Luinenburg

We can’t stop thinking of pizza even though we made deadline for our upcoming pizza and flatbread book (Artisan Pizza and Flatbread in Five Minutes a Day, Macmillan/Th Dunne Bks Oct 2011).  Even though we’re technically done, there’s still time to put a new recipe or two into the book, and you can see that there are a world of ingredients that could end up on pizza other than mozzarella and tomato (though we love that too).

We’d love some help with new recipes.  All we’d need is your concept, as in “how about yak sausage, lemon rind, and Slim Jim on a pizza?”  We’re not looking for full recipes here, but something imaginative, like Zoe’s pizza with a fresh cracked egg and an assortment of Tuscan goodies:

The winning concept entry will be selected by a jury (Zoe, me, and our editor at Thomas Dunne Books), will win a copy of Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day, and have their concept published in our pizza book this October (see “Betsy’s Seeded Oat Bread” in Healthy Bread -first names only in the book).  See rules for our contests, the most important being US entries only.  In addition, for this contest, the Authors reserve the right to decline to publish any recipe in the upcoming book if none meets with the jury’s approval.  Also, the winning entrant agrees to grant all copyright for the winning entry to Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois.  Five random entrants will also receive a free copy of Healthy Bread in Five. Contest CLOSED!

Be imaginative– it doesn’t have to be a main course, so even desserts are fair game.  And remember that many of the ingredients and ideas you might think of are already in our almost-finished manuscript, so being creative increases your chance of selection.  Entries are due anytime before January 19, 2011. Contest CLOSED!

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259 thoughts on “Your Pizza Idea in our Next Book (CONTEST NOW CLOSED, WINNING PIZZA CHOSEN)

  1. Chopped pizza – I love pizza crust and salad, so I think it would be delicious to put the ingredients for a chopped salad (bacon, bleu cheese, tomato, chopped lettuce) on top of a prebaked crust.

  2. Loving cooked kale or spinach (sauteed with garlic, olive oil and a dash of red wine vinegar), cooked bacon or ham with roasted red peppers and a mix of pepper jack and mozz.

  3. I think a pizza with caramelized onions, feta and crispy pancetta topped with baby greens, drizzled with olive oil and shards of Parmesan is just fabulous.

  4. Since this is really easy bread to make, I would want to continue the easy theme & ranch salad dressing as the sauce, then top with canned chicken (I can my own), chopped mushrooms, artichoke hearts, and olives, then, after cooking add avocado & use green salsa as dipping sauce.

  5. I like sliced apple and walnuts on sausage pizza, with a touch of cinnamon. No tomato sauce, just garlic, cheese and fresh basil as a base. Yummy!

  6. how about a blackberry pizza…. good pizza dough, spread w softened & sweetened cream cheese, top with fresh blackberries….bake & YUMM!

  7. Ah! I meant to share before — the first time ever had a baked egg on a pizza was we went to Bulgaria the first time to meet our daughter and visit her orphanage – 10 years ago. I haven’t seen it since. The photo and this post brought back such memories. 🙂 Thank you!

  8. Mexican Inspired Pizza – light layer of pepper jack cheese, black beans, onion, red pepper or chopped green chiles, once cooked add thinly sliced avocado, chopped cilantro, and finish with a squeeze of lime juice.

    Pumpkin Pizza (sweet) — 1 pkg cream cheese mixed with 1 egg, 1 tsp of vanilla, and sugar to taste then spread on crust. Canned pumpkin mixed with cinnamon, ginger, and a pinch of all spice (or use pumpkin pie mix in can) dollop or spread on top of cream cheese layer. Sprinkle with chopped pecans or walnuts. After baking you could sprinkle with raisins or dried cranberries.

    Pumpkin (savory) – canned pumpkin seasoned with garlic powder and a finely chopped chipotle and a tsp of the sauce from the chipotle; a smoked cheese, top with caramelized onions.

    Caramelized onions, walnuts, kalamata olives, topped with feta

  9. Dessert pizza sounds great to me tonight…cream cheese with vanilla extract and powdered sugar for the sauce topped with grated apple (with the excess juices squeezed out), chopped walnuts and brown sugar with orange zest grated onto the pizza after it’s baked.

  10. So hopefully this isn’t too fleshed out & therefore ineligible-if so, consider “bacon crumbles & pureed veggies mixed in with sauce hidden under cheese for picky toddlers” my concept. But here’s the long version too:

    1.) Prepare a delicious, healthy, & easy pizza dough recipe from the book. 
    2.) Mix your favorite tomato-based pizza sauce with pureed garden veggies-I use the jarred baby food kind from grocery store (w/ spinach, carrots, & peas in it) but homemade would work just as well. 
    3.) Add desired meat pre-cut in toddler chewable pieces (in other words, small enough to not be choking hazards) to the sauce. Ground beef lightly seasoned with Italian spices or bacon crumbles are our favorites!
    4.) Spread sauce generously on pizza. 
    5.) Sprinkle lots of mozzarella, cheddar, and Parmesan cheese on top. 
    6.) Bake until crust is goldeny brown and cheese is bubbly. 
    7.) Watch your picky eater gobble down meat, dairy, veggies, & whole grains all in one meal!

  11. Dessert Pizza: Almond Paste filling topped with Montmorency Tart Dried Cherries and Sliced Almonds (crystalized/candied). Don’t forget the pretty mint garnish. : )

  12. Since the dough’s so easy, one might have a lot of extra time on one’s hands. I came up with this ambitious combo after investigating Chicago’s innovative fine dining scene:

    Pesto of arugula and toasted hazelnut. Fresh, creamy burrata cheese. Thin-sliced venison loin. Thin-sliced celeriac. Black currants. Dusting of nutmeg.

  13. We do a killer brie pizza using about a quarter of the master recipe. After shaping and rising we top with a thin layer of apple butter then add about 6-7 ozs of our favorite creamy brie chopped into coarse chunks. Next we add a peeled and cored firm cooking apple (like a granny smith or a sweeter braeburn) also cut in chunks, and last add a sprinkling of cinnamon sugar over all.

    Bake at 400 F until the cheese is melted and bubbly and the apple is tender. Makes a nice appetizer but we’ve also eaten it as a main course.

    Jeff and Zoe, we can’t thank you enough for the book. It’s been inspiring and life changing!

  14. How about a tuna salad pizza? Pieces of tuna steak + pickles + hard-boiled egg + tomatoes. Maybe some corn and peppers too.

  15. I started making this when we had an abundance of Swiss chard from our CSA this summer:

    Remove casings from 3 links Italian sausage and brown sausage; remove to plate.
    Saute Swiss chard and minced garlic in sausage drippings, season w/salt and pepper if desired.
    Return sausage to pan (heat off), and mix w/Swiss chard.
    Spread mixture on pizza dough.
    Top w/deli slice provolone (I like Boar’s Head), in a single layer, to cover sausage/chard mixture.
    Bake and enjoy!

    This is a tasty alternative to a pizza made w/red sauce base.

  16. Energy Bar Pizza! For a quick breakfast or mid-morning snack. I’m thinking a dough with oats, nuts and pieces of chocolate, topped with a thin layer of peanut butter, jam, raisins and other dried fruits.

  17. Forget the sauce — just olive oil (or truffle oil), feta cheese, drained roma tomatoes (roasted if you have the time), fresh sliced basil, and crushed cayenne.
    Works well on wheat doughs (or, personally I’ve made it with many sheets of phyllo).

  18. Fresh tomatoes sliced thinly on a mandolin spread over dough to form the ‘sauce’, Red onion also sliced thinly on a mandolin, dollops of fresh, Coach Farm Goat Cheese, an abundance of snipped fresh sage leaves and small bits of prosciutto throughout with a small drizzle of EVOO and some cracked four blend pepper to finish. All on a thinly rolled in five dough– our fav is the Italian Semolina from the ABin5.

  19. This pizza is unique because it is far from the roots of an original Italian pizza. It does not include thin crusts or delicate toppings, but rather it is made with a heavy, thick crust and large amounts of cheese, sauce and ingredients.

    Chicago Deep Dish, yum!


    Pizza Dough:
    16 ounces water
    3/4 teaspoon dry yeast
    1 tablespoon Kosher salt
    5 cups of bread flour (I use King Arthur for pizza)
    1/4 cup olive oil
    1/4 cup cornmeal

    2 cups tomato sauce, jar or homemade
    2 cups shredded mozzarella
    1/2 cup grated Romano
    1/2 cup grated Parmesan
    Add any other toppings you like (pepperoni, Italian sausage, onions, sweet peppers, spinach, etc.)


    1. In a mixer combine the water and the yeast and allow the yeast to dissolve.

    2. Add the remaining ingredients except for the cornmeal and begin to mix the dough using a dough hook on low speed.

    3. Once a ball is formed mix on medium speed for 1 to 2 minutes until the dough becomes elastic and smooth.

    4. Remove from the mixer and place in a bowl coated with olive oil. Allow the dough to rest for approximately 4 hours.

    5. Once the dough is rested, place on flat surface and dust with some corn meal.

    6. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

    7. In a deep baking dish or deep dish pizza pan, spread the dough using your fingers at the bottom of the pan and make sure to have enough dough to come up the sides of the pan approximately 1/2-inch high.

    8. Begin by placing the mozzarella cheese on the bottom of the crust.

    9. Add any toppings then the rest of the cheese, the tomato sauce is added last.

    10. Place in the oven for 30 to 40 minutes until golden and crispy.

    Serve pizza straight from the oven to the table.

    Mangia – Eat!

  20. We make a white sauce with mayo, garlic, and parmesan cheese. Then, I throw on diced tomatoes, onions and peppers. A bit of diced chicken or ham is good on it as well.
    I’ve made tiny pizzas in this way as party snacks, and they’re always popular.

  21. A basil pesto cream sauce topped with a blend of parmasan, romano and asiago cheese with prosciutto, garlic, grilled broccoli and artichoke hearts. Drizzle with a balsamic reduction.

    This is also amazing as a deep dish pizza!

  22. My favorite is a reuben pizza. Deli rye crust from book #1, thousand island dressing for sauce, drained sauerkraut and chopped corned beef for the top. Very easy-one of the best pizza I have ever had!

  23. I would love to see a dairy free recipe. I am lactose intolerant and in a world of all dairy, it would be nice to see something with goat cheese or some other alternative.

  24. Kale, Red Onion, Kalamata Olive and Goat Cheese Pizza

    Saute chopped kale, a couple cloves of minced garlic with some olive oil until just wilted. (It will cook more and get a bit crispy when it bakes on the pizza)

    Top unbaked crust with olive oil, minced garlic, the sauteed kale mixture, thinly sliced red onions, pitted kalamata olives, and blobs of fresh goat cheese. Bake on a pizza stone or pizza pan. in a 450 – 500 degree oven until brown (anyway you like it)

  25. Asaian inspird:
    teriyaki sauce base, shredded napa cabbage, shredded teriyaki chicken, caramelized onions, fresh finely minced garlic, and shredded mozz. Served with crispy fried wonton strips and a *very* light sprinkling of sesame oil on top.

    Sounds weird but I swear it’s delicious.

  26. I love caramelized onions on pizza. A fave is caramelized onions, steak/roast beef, and a cream sauce made with blue cheese OR crust brushed with olive oil, topped with blue cheese crumbles. Yum!

  27. For a rustic Indian flavoured pizza : Tandoori Paneer (Indian cheese) caramelised red onions with a generous sprinkle of chaat masala would make a lovely topping!

    Tandoori Paneer can be subsituted with Tandoori chicken /Chicken Kebabs etc for a non-vegetarian version.

  28. My favorite Italian Pizza:
    Crust: Light whole wheat pizza dough (made with olive oil in the dough) rolled very thinly
    Sauce: spread with a thin layer of homemade red gravy (if you have it) or jarred Rao’s Arrabiata sauce
    Topping: thinly slice breaded and fried eggplant slices, roasted red peppers, mushrooms and spinach(pre-cooked by sauteeing in garlic-infused olive oil), thin strips of fried crisp proscuitto
    Cheese: grated mozzarella
    Buon Appetito!

  29. Any of the pizza dough choices (we love them all), add your favorite sauce (red), top with the sharpest grated cheddar cheese you can find (using this as your main cheese), then grated mozzarella ( about a fourth less than the other cheese). Next , place canned dried tomatoes (rinsed and patted dry ) and lots of pepperoni mixed with green olives & Kalamata olives, in that order.

  30. What about a Chinese version? Thinnly sliced BBQ pork (to replace pizza staple pepperoni/sausage) with Hoisin/oyster sauce (to substitute tomato sauce) with crunchiness and sweetness from lotus roots and aroma from Chinese celery top with mozzarella (for its mild taste that will not over power the other ingredients).

  31. At one Cleveland’s best restaurants, I recently had the best brussel sprouts with anchovies.

    I would love to see this flavor combination on a pizza. Brussel sprouts, anchovies, a thin layer of tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella and some basil to keep it simple? Or potentially another veggie could be added. Thin slices of eggplant or zucchini?

    Either way, keep it gluten free! I love your GF recipes.

  32. Mexican Seven-Layer Pizza!
    Layer on the crust…
    -refried beans
    -sour cream
    -cheeses (Monterey Jack and Jalepeno varieties!)
    -green onions
    Yum, yum, yum!

  33. I’ve been toying with the idea of trying a pizza with grilled chicken, baby spinach, sundried tomatoes, and goat cheese. No sauce, just a little olive oil.

  34. I love to use the following toppings on homemade pizza: shrimp (quickly sauteed in olive oil w/some garlic), marinated artichoke hearts, and thin slices of proscuitto. This is especially good with asiago cheese. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

  35. A healthy and not-too-sweet dessert pizza: Can use either master boule recipe or, even better, light whole wheat with 1/4 C honey substituted for equal amount water for crust. Then, mascarpone cheese, and an assortment of fresh fruits including fresh apricots, raspberries, peaches, blackberries with a LIGHT sprinkling of cinnamon sugar and (optional) chopped walnuts.

  36. Caramelize chopped sweet onions in olive oil.
    Add heavy cream. Heat for a minute or two.
    Take off heat and add grated pecorino
    Spread over light whole wheat dough and add roughly chopped pieces of prosciutto.

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