I really must be ready to go home to Jersey since I’ve been craving all things east coast- Italian ice, bagels, NY pizza, and so much more. Luckily I’ll be back in Jersey in August and I won’t have to wait too long to stuff my face with everything in sight. When I moved to California I quickly learned that tomato pie is a NJ/PA/NY thing. Tomato pie is basically pizza minus the cheese. I was introduced to this slice of savory heaven in college at a pizzeria near my college campus. I actually prefer tomato pie over pizza, even though I love me some cheese. I used Lick My Spoon’s recipe for the crust with a few changes and it turned out perfect! Crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. I cheated a little with the sauce and used canned tomatoes to shorten the cook time. The sauce was delicious and the crust was surprisingly crunchy! Try it out for yourself!
Cook time: 3 hours Makes: one 17×11 pie
1.5 tsp yeast
1 cup water (between 120 – 130°F)
2 tbsp. sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup whole wheat flour (you can substitute this with all-purpose)
2 tsp kosher salt dissolved in 2 tbsp. hot water
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil for greasing pan
8 oz. can of Hunts Tomato Sauce with Basil, Garlic, and Oregano
14.5 oz. can of Del Monte Diced Tomatoes with Basil, Garlic, and Oregano
4 cloves garlic, minced
Parmesan cheese (optional)
1. In a large mixing bowl, add yeast, warm water, and sugar and whisk. Let this sit for 10 minutes.
2. Add the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, dissolved salt water, and olive oil to the mixing bowl. Mix with the dough hook attachment until the dough is nice and smooth. If the dough is still sticky add 1 tbsp. of all-purpose flour at a time. You can also mix all of this by hand if you don’t have a mixer.
3. Spray another medium sized bowl with oil and place the dough in the bowl. Drizzle a tsp of olive oil on top of the dough and coat it. Cover with plastic wrap and let this rise for 1.5 hours.
4. While the dough is rising, in a medium sized saucepan- add the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and garlic. Use a stick blender at this point to blend the diced tomatoes down a little. Bring this to a boil and then let this simmer over low heat for 15-20 minutes. Let this cool.
5. Grease a 17×11 baking sheet with 2 tbsp. of olive oil. Once the dough has risen, place it on the baking sheet and pat out into a rectangle. If the dough keeps shrinking back, let it rest for 5-10 minutes before patting it out. Poke 25-30 holes into the dough with a fork to break any large bubbles. Cover with plastic wrap and let this rest for 30 minutes.
6. Pre-heat your oven to 500 F and place a pizza stone or upside down baking sheet on the middle rack while the oven heats. Once the dough has rested place the crust in the oven on top of the pizza stone/upside down baking sheet and turn down the heat to 425F. Bake the crust for 15 minutes until the top is golden brown.
7. Remove the crust and spread your tomato sauce on top, grate some fresh black pepper on top and sprinkle with parmesan if you like and return to the oven for an additional 10-15 minutes. Don’t let crust’s lightness in color fool you- it will 100% be super crunchy due to the olive oil used in the baking sheet. Let this cool for 5 minutes and slice up to enjoy!