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Wednesday, September 1

The Trick to Margherita Pizza

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My favorite margherita pizza is from Bertucci’s, an Italian restaurant chain in the Northeast that also happens to have the best dinner rolls around. Mmmm…I need a roll. But I digress…for the last 11 years or so I’ve been trying to replicate their margherita pizza. I’ve come to terms with the fact I never will, but I did discover a little trick recently that got me closer!

Whenever I made margherita pizza (which is essentially just tomatoes and/or tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella cheese and fresh basil), the basil never tasted like it does at Bertucci’s. I tried putting the fresh basil on top of the cheese, under the cheese, chopped, not chopped…but that flavor I love just wasn’t coming through.

Of course we went to dinner at Bertucci’s this last trip out East. When they brought my beautiful margherita out, the realization hit me like a pizza pie to the face! They add the basil AFTER the pizza comes out of the oven. That is why it always tasted so differently!

So there you have it folks. Throw your basil on AFTER you’ve cooked your pizza. It makes all the difference in terms of flavor. Mmmmmm….

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20 Comments »

  1. Yummy, next time I make pizza I will try it that way!

  2. 2
    Robyn

    Great tip, Jane! I’m going to try to throw the basil on after my Grilled Chicken Pizza is finished cooking. I bet the basil will taste so much better.

  3. 3
    sara

    I just made margherita pizza and thought the SAME thing with the wilty brown basil. I thought about putting it on after…and now I will!! Thank you!!

  4. I live about a 7 minute walk from Bertucci’s — lucky me! I love love love their rolls.

  5. 5
    Kiasa

    It does make all the difference, doesn’t it?! We sprinkle herbs on almost every pizza we make after it comes out of the oven; rosemary, parsley, etc…depending on the toppings. It always adds a nice touch.

    Maybe you have a good sauce recipe but we love either fresh, well salted tomatoes (when in season) or really good canned tomatoes (San Marzano are our favorite brand), hand crushed mixed with a bit of olive oil and crushed garlic. Yum. Yum!

  6. 6
    Sarah

    My jaw dropped when this post popped up in my reader because I JUST posted about this very pizza today. :) Great minds!

    I love love LOVE Bertucci’s pizza and didn’t realize how spoiled I was when I lived near the restaurant.

    I hear using a grill to make the pizza will help give the crust that quick, sealing heat to keep the outside crispy and the inside nice and chewy.

    Happy Wednesday to you!

    ~Sarah

  7. 7
    Laura

    Best dinner rolls ever ! ! !

  8. Thanks for the tip! Now, can you help us make those rolls? :)

  9. 9
    Terri

    I just love your blog, recipes and pictures! Thanks for sharing it all!

  10. 10
    collette

    Oh, I do love and miss Bertucci’s! One of my best friends and I go there when we get together, which, given my family’s schedule these days is rare.

  11. 11
    Kami

    Yum! Jane, that looks so good!

  12. 13
    Gloria

    I LOVE Margherita pizza – it really is one of my favorite pizzas. I make this at home too and I have to agree I was puzzled by the fact that the basil never looked good or tasted good. I took me a while but I decided to try putting the basil on after the pizza was baked as it sat on the rack for a few minutes. Wow!! What a difference. I wonder why we never realized that sooner. LOL

  13. 14
    Pat

    Heading to the Cape for a very quick visit to go out for dinner and a few wavealicious ocean waves thanks to Earl (Earle?) I think we should stop @ Bertucci’s for so I can add a roll or two to my personal collection. I will definitely look for that Tshirt that Anna has- perfect for middle school! Thanks for the inspirations Jane.

  14. I love Bertucci’s- I used to make my own pizza dough (before kids) but now I stop by Bertucci’s and buy fresh pizza dough before dinner. It tastes great and they only charge $3.50 for a large ball of fresh dough. Thanks for the tip about the basil!

    Cindy

  15. 16
    Jane Maynard

    are you SERIOUS? now I’m really hating living so far from bertucci’s – can’t believe you can go in and buy the dough. that is awesome!!

  16. 17
    Sophia

    I’ve seen so many recipes lately for pizzas! So far, I think yours must be the best! The other one I really like is Mexican Pizza. What do you think? Thanks again for sharing this delicious pizza recipe!

  17. Lovely pizza! I was once told “the world’s economy revolves around pizza!”

  18. 19
    kat

    Omg that looks so good! It’s my fave pizza of all time! Thanks for sharing! I’m new to blogging and love that there is a foodie community! If you have time, please check out my blog: http://shecooksandheeats.wordpress.com/. And of course! Any advice would be great :)

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