Randi Baird

This pizza recipe combines a great dough, lots of topping ideas (and proportions), and directions for assembling and baking. A pizza stone (and a very hot oven!) will give you the best results and a pizza peel will make transfering the pizza to the oven much easier. (Be sure to put your dough on top of your peel before topping!) But before beginning, you should be sure all to read all of the tips in the feature which originally accompanied this recipe in Martha's Vineyard magazine: All We Are Saying is Give Pizza a Chance.

Makes 4 personal pizzas, or 8 mini pizzas if you divide each dough ball in two and adjust the directions and amounts accordingly.

For assembling:


For the seasoned oil:

  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, more for drizzling
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fresh garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • A few pinches of lemon zest (optional)


For the red sauce (optional):

  • 1 to 1½ cups Roasted Tomato sauce , other homemade (thick) tomato or pizza sauce, or purchased pizza sauce


For base cheese layer:

  • 2 to 2½ cups fontina cheese, grated
  • ¾ cup Parmigiano Reggiano, coarsely grated


For toppings (including other cheese):

  • 3 to 5 choices from topping sidebar (BELOW) 
  • Kosher or sea salt
  • Olive oil or infused oil for drizzling
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons fresh herbs, roughly chopped (any kind, use less of woody herbs like rosemary and thyme)
  • 1 cup baby arugula, baby kale, micro greens, or other tender fresh greens (optional)


1. Put a baking stone on the lowest rack of your oven and heat the oven to 500 degrees.

2. Make the seasoned oil: combine the oil, garlic, red pepper flakes (if using), and lemon zest (if using) in a small bowl and stir to combine. Set aside with a pastry or basting brush (or small spoon).

3. Combine the fontina and the Parmigiano in another bowl. Arrange the seasoned oil, the cheeses, your toppings, salt, and a bottle of olive oil or infused oil near your work area.

4. Sprinkle a pizza peel or the back of a large cookie sheet with cornmeal. Lightly flour a work surface, your hands, and a rolling pin. Gently press one dough ball out with your fingers and hands until it forms a flat cake on your work surface. Using the rolling pin, roll the dough out to a 9-inch circle. If the dough is bouncy, let it rest between rolls.

5. Transfer the rolled dough to the pizza peel or baking sheet. 

6. Spoon about one scant tablespoon of the seasoned oil (including the garlic, etc.) onto the dough and brush or use the back of a spoon to spread it all over the dough, leaving a 3/4-inch border around the edge. If using red sauce, spoon about 1/4 of it over the oil. Next, sprinkle on a few tablespoons of the fontina-Parmigiano mixture (do this directly over the oil if not using red sauce). Arrange, dollop, or sprinkle a quarter of your other toppings in any order you like over the dough. Finish with one or two more tablespoons of the fontina-Parmigiano mixture. Sprinkle on a small amount of the fresh herbs, drizzle the whole pizza with a little olive oil or infused oil (or a small amount of the seasoned oil), and sprinkle with kosher salt or sea salt. 

7. Transfer the pizza to the oven and cook until the crust is golden brown around the edges and crisp and golden on the bottom (check with tongs), 8 to 10 minutes. (The dough will be more bread-like at 8 minutes; more cracker-like at 9 or 10 minutes.) Use the peel (or tongs and a baking sheet) to transfer the pizza to a wooden cutting board. Top with fresh greens or more fresh herbs if desired. Slice and serve.

8. Repeat with remaining dough and toppings.

This recipe was originally published with the article, All We Are Saying is Give Pizza a Chance.


Randi Baird

Topping Suggestions

I suggest choosing between three to five toppings (one or even two of which can be another cheese), preferably from more than one of the different categories (creamy, salty, savory, sweet), to create some interesting contrast. You also have the option of finishing with fresh greens or fresh herbs after the pizza comes out of the oven, so consider that when pairing flavors. For instance, spicy arugula is a great foil for a combination of salty blue cheese and sweet caramelized onions. Salty ingredients like anchovies or capers play well with savory roasted or sun-dried tomatoes and a light, creamy cheese like fresh mozzarella or ricotta. For savory toppings, bear in mind that while some veggies can go on raw, you’ll get a much tastier topping if you cook many of them, such as mushrooms and eggplants. Meat toppings like sausage, ground meat, and bacon should also be cooked first. Delicate cured meats like prosciutto can actually go on after the pizza comes out of the oven.

The amounts suggested are total amounts for four pizzas – just so you’ll have a ballpark to aim for when shopping and prepping. Don’t be tempted to overload your pizza, and don’t be afraid to go very simple, either. More isn’t necessarily better!


(Between 4 and 8 ounces total for 4 pizzas)

  • Brie
  • Crème frâiche
  • Feta
  • Goat cheese, fresh or aged
  • Grey Barn Prufrock
  • Grey Barn Rip Rap
  • Gruyère
  • Fresh mozzarella balls (I like the small ciliegine), sliced
  • Mermaid Farm Fromage blanc
  • Mermaid Farm gouda or other young or aged gouda
  • Ricotta



(Use sparingly, between 2 tablespoons and 3 to 4 ounces total for 4 pizzas)

  • Bacon or pancetta, cooked
  • Blue cheese (such as Grey Barn Bluebird)
  • Capers, roughly chopped if large
  • Clams, chopped
  • Olive tapenade
  • Olives, pitted
  • Pepperoni or very thinly sliced salami
  • Pesto (basil or Pam’s Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto)
  • Prosciutto, thinly sliced (top after cooking), or other thinly sliced cured meat
  • Smoked fish (trout, bluefish, or salmon), shredded or thinly sliced



(Meat, fish, and vegetables; 3/4 to 1 1/4 cups total for 4 pizzas)

Visit Island meat farms to give your pizza local flavor: Beetlebung Farm, Blackwater Farm, The Good Farm, Grey Barn, Cleveland Farm, Morning Glory Farm, Mermaid Farm.

  • Chicken, lamb, or pork sausage, cooked
  • Collards, kale, or broccoli rabe, blanched or very thinly sliced and tossed in oil
  • Corn kernels, raw
  • Beef, lamb, or pork (ground), cooked
  • Beef or pork ribs, cooked and shredded
  • Chicken, roasted and shredded
  • Duck, roasted and shredded
  • Eggplant, sliced thinly and roasted or sautéed
  • Kale (baby), raw and tossed in oil
  • Mushrooms (cremini, shiitake or other), sliced and sautéed
  • Peppers, sliced thinly and sautéed
  • Potatoes (baby red or gold, fingerling), raw and very thinly sliced or blanched and diced
  • Squid, raw, thinly sliced, and tossed in oil
  • Spinach, wilted
  • Sweet potatoes, diced and blanched or briefly sautéed
  • Tomatoes (roasted or sun-dried), sliced



(Use about ¾ cup total for 4 pizzas)

  • Bay scallops, raw
  • Caramelized onions, leeks, shallots, or fennel bulb, thinly sliced and sautéed slowly
  • Garlic, roasted
  • Apples, thinly sliced and sautéed
  • Figs (fresh), sliced
  • Pears, thinly sliced and briefly sautéed