Pizza Bianca {with Zucchini}

When it comes to controversial foods, the most obvious objects of controversy are often delicacies such as fois gras, veal, and whale. But what about the more humble foods that can spark equally passionate debates? Like pizza?

Pizza is sometimes overlooked as one that can spur quarrels, but the truth is, pit a New Yorker against a Chicagoan on whether deep dish is a legitimate pizza, and you could potentially televise the war of words on Pay Per View and be entertained for a good hour. People are passionate about their pizza, and I guess I’m no different. I grew up on New York style pizza, but have a deep appreciation for the pizzas you can find all over the world. Deep dish was a staple for me while I was in grad school in Chicago (dipped in ranch dressing, Kansas City style). And I’ll never forget the Roman pizza I had with a beautiful, quivering egg on top.

Just the other day, my own husband chastised me when I told the local pizza shop that I wanted “one pie with mushrooms and olives.” “Pie!?! No one calls it pie here, they have no idea what you mean. You know that’s a New York thing,” he said. I argued that the term is universal. Isn’t it?

Here in California, there’s pizza, but none so far that holds a flame to what I consider an awesome New York pizza. Don’t get me wrong – it’s good, but it’s just not the same. Try as I might in my own kitchen, I just can’t get it to taste like those perfect slices. It must be the sauce, that wonderful tomato-ey-just-tangy-enough sauce.

But I can make a pizza that I do love, the Pizza Bianca, or White Pizza. It’s all the best bits of the pizza, without the elusive sauce. And growing up, there was a time I adored it more than the regular slice. Crispy dough, with a hint of fresh garlic and cheesy goodness – I’ve been craving it for quite a while. But I wanted to add a splash of California. So enter the zucchini:

Maybe it’s me just wanting to feel less guilty about my bread and cheese pleasure. Or maybe I just wanted to play with my mandoline. Either way, the thin slices looked so elegant on the Pizza Biancas.

Want a slice of this pie?

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Pizza Bianca {with Zucchini}

Yield: Makes 4 individual pizzas or one large pie.

Ingredients:

Dough
If you have access to pre-made pizza dough from your local pizzeria or grocer, this shaves off extra prep time. But if you wish to make your own, try this one from Tyler Florence. The key to easier rolling is making sure the dough sits for at least 15 minutes at room temperature - the dough will be easier to work with, less elastic,  and less likely to snap back as you roll.

Toppings

  • 6 oz mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 4 oz fontina cheese, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • olive oil for brushing
  • 1-2 zucchinis, thinly sliced
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 450°F. Brush a baking tray with olive oil.

Roll out the pizza dough to desired shape and size on a floured surface. Transfer the dough to the prepared tray. Press dimples into the dough, as well as a ridge around the perimeter to prevent the cheeses from oozing. Brush lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with the fresh garlic. Arrange the mozzarella and fontina cheeses. Arrange zucchini slices. Brush zucchini lightly with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until the pizzas are bubbling and the dough is golden. Slice and serve immediately. Enjoy!

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by Liren Baker on September 28, 2011

32 Responses to “Pizza Bianca {with Zucchini}”

  1. Lindsey September 28, 2011 @ 9:55 am (#
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    oh my goodness that looks AMAZING!! I say this as I’m ravenous and have nothing ready for dinner =) Looks simple and delicious!

  2. Russell at Chasing Delicious September 28, 2011 @ 11:07 am (#
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    These pizzas look scrumptious! I love the look of the sliced zucchini flower on top. And while I definitely have a preferred style of pizza I love trying new varieties and I love pizza debates!

  3. Kelly September 28, 2011 @ 1:38 pm (#
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    How cute these look incredible!! What a great recipe :)

  4. Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts September 28, 2011 @ 1:45 pm (#
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    This just looks heavenly! Beautiful little pizza, and the zucchini is perfect for it!

  5. joy September 28, 2011 @ 1:57 pm (#
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    Great recipe. My family would live it.

  6. Simone September 28, 2011 @ 2:52 pm (#
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    It does look very good your pizza bianco… I’m not a big fan of the pizza’s we can find around here and I really only like the ones I make myself. There is just such a big difference when the crust is really fresh!

  7. Nelly Rodriguez September 28, 2011 @ 4:03 pm (#
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    Love this recipe! #pizzalover

  8. Ann September 28, 2011 @ 9:10 pm (#
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    What great pizza! I agree, that some folks take their pizza very seriously….however, while they’re arguing – I’ll sneak in and have another slice!

  9. carolineadobo September 29, 2011 @ 1:39 am (#
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    My house have pizza in a regular basis but only with the red sauce so this is something to keep in mind. And another reason to play with the mandoline – I’m in!

  10. Elise's Kitchen September 29, 2011 @ 6:37 am (#
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    This sounds delicious and looks gorgeous! I love how you arranged the zucchini.

  11. Kita September 29, 2011 @ 7:08 am (#
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    Even in my household we have debates over pizza. Lucky for us they stay pretty tame. These little personal pizzas look perfect to sooth any controversy.

  12. Kimmi September 29, 2011 @ 12:39 pm (#
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    These look so fresh, savory and yummy! I have to try these. thanks for sharing :)

  13. kankana September 29, 2011 @ 3:05 pm (#
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    Once u grow up eating a certain dish .. it’s tough to replace that taste or fall in love with any other version of it :)
    Totally liked the pizza u made. This would be a great meal and it’s simple ..

  14. kankana September 29, 2011 @ 3:06 pm (#
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    Once u grow up eating a certain dish .. it’s tough to replace that taste or fall in love with any other version of it :)
    Totally liked the pizza u made. This would be a great meal and it’s simple …

  15. Lindsey@Lindselicious September 29, 2011 @ 3:15 pm (#
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    Oh your zucchini slices are like whisper thin- I love it. These pizzas are adorable!

  16. Norma September 30, 2011 @ 5:05 am (#
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    For NY pizza it’s the water…just like our bagles…that is what they say…A thin crust, finest ingredients. Your pizza is excellend and I would give the NYC thumbs up!

  17. Susan September 30, 2011 @ 6:24 am (#
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    Sooo pretty … sooo tasty! Love these and your photos are perfect!

  18. Cindie September 30, 2011 @ 8:57 am (#
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    As a New Yorker, I still think this pizza looks amazing! Simple to make, but it looks really satisfying. Definitely saving this!

  19. sippitysup September 30, 2011 @ 3:06 pm (#
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    so artful so delicious. GREG

  20. Beth Michelle October 1, 2011 @ 6:00 am (#
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    This looks so good. I would love to be having it for dinner tonight.

  21. anna October 1, 2011 @ 9:56 pm (#
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    The only pizza bianca I am familiar with is the one with bacon and mushrooms…I know, I know…I have a lot of growing up to do in terms of cooking and cuisine IQ, I’m taking it a step at a time…Thanks for your posts!

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  23. Aggie October 5, 2011 @ 2:24 pm (#
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    I grew up in a family pizza shop and have always called it “pie” :) I love all kinds of pizza…though Chicago deep dish prob not high on my favorite list, I love a good crust, and there is truly nothing better than good homemade pizza like this! Yum! It’s beautiful too!!

  24. Jazz Rules October 6, 2011 @ 12:15 pm (#
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    Fabulous pictures! Makes me want a slice of pie real bad!

  25. Valeria October 10, 2011 @ 1:29 am (#
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    I stopped being guilty about carbs and cheese because I do think that in the right amount they are good for health. I do choose artisan bread and cheeses, though. It relly makes a huge difference. Same for pizza: it either has unprocessed, good ingredients, or I make it myself. I will surely try this recipe: it really looks great! Very nice pics, too –I am mouthwatering! nomnomnom :)

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  27. Marta J June 17, 2012 @ 3:43 pm (#
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    Simple and Tasty! Did a zucchini, fennel and buffalo mozzarella version of it so it should taste amazing by default. Highly recommend buffalo mozzarella- it makes such a difference! :)

  28. Laura (Tutti Dolci) September 12, 2012 @ 4:04 pm (#
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    How did I miss this? What a fantastic pizza, I love the delicious simplicity of the toppings you chose!

  29. megan September 12, 2012 @ 10:11 pm (#
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    I would pit east coast pizza against west coast pizza that would be my fight… love the zucchini…

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  32. Laurie July 24, 2014 @ 12:29 pm (#
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    I have been doing a roasted garlic “white” pizza for a while. Imagine my joy seeing this. More zucchini than I know what to do with right now. This will be tonight’s dinner.

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