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Polenta Pizza with Tomato and Pesto

Ripe tomatoes should be firm and fully colored. They are at their peak during the warm days of summer. When baking ripe tomatoes, it is a good idea to salt them to draw out any excess moisture. Pat dry before using.

Ingredients:

  • 1 creamy polenta round in a 9-inch pan (see related recipe at left), at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup purchased pesto
  • 1 large tomato, sliced
  • 8 oz. fresh mozzarella, sliced
  • Olive oil for brushing

Directions:

Prepare the pizza
Preheat an oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

Turn the polenta out onto the prepared baking sheet. Spread the top of the polenta with the pesto, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Top with the tomato slices and divide the cheese evenly over the top. Brush the exposed polenta with olive oil.

Bake the pizza
Bake until the cheese is melted and the polenta is golden, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack and let the pizza cool briefly. Transfer the pizza to a cutting board, cut into wedges and serve immediately. Serves 4 to 6.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Make Ahead, by Rick Rodgers (Oxmoor House, 2008).