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Ingredients

How to make it

  • 1. For the crust: Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a small skillet; add next 3 ingredients and cook over low heat until garlic softens, about 5 minutes. Cool.
  • 2. Sprinkle yeast and sugar over 1/4 cup warm water and let stand until yeast starts to swell, about 5 minutes. Mix flour, cornmeal, and salt in a food processor. Add 1 cup cool water and herb oil to yeast mixture. With machine on, gradually pour liquid into dry ingredients; process until a rough ball forms. If dough is too sticky or dry, add flour or water, 1 tablespoon at a time. Let dough rest for 5 minutes, then continue to process until dough is smooth, about 35 seconds.
  • 3. Knead dough by hand a few seconds to form smooth, round ball; place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth and let rise until dough doubles in size, about 2 hours
  • 4. Punch dough down and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll each portion to form a smooth, round ball. Place the balls on a lightly floured surface, cover with a damp cloth, and let rest until they puff slightly, about 30 minutes.
  • 5. Roll each dough ball into a 7-inch round, flouring work surface and dough as necessary. Place on a floured cookie sheet; sprinkle top with flour. Stack the rounds in groups of four.
  • 6. For the fennel topping: Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add onion and fennel; sauté until vegetables soften, about 8 minutes. Add garlic; sauté until garlic softens, about 2 minutes. Stir in thyme, fennel seeds, and red pepper flakes; season to taste with salt and pepper and set aside. (Can cover and refrigerate overnight.)
  • 7. For the roasted tomatoes: Heat oven to 375 degrees or heat grill. If roasting tomatoes in oven, place tomato halves in a roasting pan, brush with remaining oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper; roast until tomatoes are just tender, 20 to 30 minutes. If grilling, place oiled and seasoned tomatoes, cut side down, on grill; grill until marked, about 5 minutes. Turn tomatoes cut side up; grill until just tender, 7 to 10 minutes. Do not turn off grill. (The tomatoes can be set aside at room temperature up to 6 hours ahead.)
  • 8. To grill pizza crusts, top, and serve immediately: Brush tops of 4 dough rounds with some of remaining olive oil (from garlic-herb pizza crust measurements), then sprinkle each with salt. Grill, oil side down, covered, until dark brown grill marks appear, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Burst any bubbles that develop. Brush dough tops with oil, then flip. Quickly spread a portion of the fennel-onion topping over each pizza round, top with 3 roasted tomato halves, sprinkle with the Asiago, and drizzle with olive oil. Cover and grill until pizza bottoms are crisp and browned, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve immediately and repeat process with remaining 4 pizza rounds.
  • To grill pizza rounds to top and broil at a later time: Brush tops of 4 dough rounds with some of remaining olive oil, then sprinkle each with salt. Grill, oil side down, covered, until dark brown grill marks appear, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Burst any bubbles that develop. Brush dough tops with oil, then flip. Grill until bottoms are brown, about 2 minutes longer. Repeat with remaining dough rounds. Can be covered and stored at room temperature up to 6 hours. To serve: Heat broiler. Spread a portion of the fennel-onion mixture over each pizza, top each with 3 roasted tomato halves, sprinkle with cheese, and drizzle with oil. Broil until toppings sizzle and cheese melts, 1 to 2 minutes. Serve immediately.

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