Pesto and Black Olive Pizza


Excerpted From Cast Iron Cooking By Dwayne Ridgaway — Quarry Books

In New York City, just about every pizza joint serves a version of this classic combination. Traditionally, black olives are preferred, but experiment with your favorite olive if you like.

Year Round
  • Prep Time:
    1 hr
  • Cook Time:
    20 mins
  • Ready In:
    5 mins


  • 1 recipe Neapolitan-style Pizza Dough (recipe follows) or store bought pizza dough
  • 1 cup basil pesto
  • 8 ounces fresh buffalo mozzarella cheese, sliced into large pieces
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh-leaf parsley
  • 1 can sliced black olives
  • 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese

And for the Pizza Dough

  • 1 cup warm water (110-115 degree F)
  • 1 (1/4 –ounce) packet active dry yeast
  • 2 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 cup cake flour (not self-rising)
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Olive oil for brushing bowl

Preparation Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Combine the water and yeast in a large bowl and stir until dissolved.
  2. Combine the flours in a mixing bowl, using a whisk to stir. In a separate mixing bowl combine 2 cups of the flour mixture with salt, make a well in the center.
  3. Pour the yeast mixture into the well and begin to incorporate the flour, pulling from the sides with a wooden spoon and stirring until it all comes together. If it becomes too sticky to handle, add an additional ½ cup of flour and incorporate.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and incorporate the remaining ½ to 1 cup of flour, kneading and working the dough. Give the dough a one-quarter turn, again fold the sides in and push down and away with the heel of your hand. Repeat this process. Knead the dough until smooth and form a ball.
  5. Coat a large mixing bowl with olive oil, place the dough ball in the bowl, turn to coat with oil, cover with plastic wrap, and place in a warm, draft-free area to rise, until double its original size.
  6. Punch down the risen dough and divide in half, then use as directed. At this point, too, the dough can be placed in plastic bags and refrigerated. If using the refrigeration method, remove and bring to room temperature before proceeding. Dough can be frozen as well; after kneading the first time, place in freezer bags or containers and freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to use, thaw at room temperature or refrigerated, allow to rise double the original size, punch down, and use according to recipe directions.
  7. Stretch dough to fit a 14” Pro-logic Pizza Pan. Spread pesto over the dough in an even layer. Distribute sliced mozzarella cheese evenly on the dough. Top with sliced olives and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Place pizza on the center rack of the hot oven. Bake until golden and bubbling, about 20 minutes. Remove and let rest for 5 minutes, slice, and serve.

Suggested Cookware