Ken Forkish’s Margherita Pizza
Ken Forkish

Ken Forkish

Ken Forkish’s Margherita Pizza

The most classic of Italian pizzas features the red, green and white of the Italian flag: tomato sauce, basil and fresh mozzarella. I prefer to cut the cheese, and not too much, into small pieces for even melting, and I like to place a few drops of olive oil on each basil leaf before baking so they look pretty and don’t dry out. If you want to use fresh mozzarella di bufula, it is very wet and you should either drain cut pieces over cheese cloth for a couple hours ahead of time, or put the cheese on the pizza right after it bakes. Same with burrata.
the Smart Oven® Pizzaiolo
the Smart Oven® Pizzaiolo Product Details

the Smart Oven® Pizzaiolo

20 mins total time

5 mins active time


Makes 1 pizza



  • flour icon

    for dusting

  • pizza dough ball icon
    1 pizza dough ball

    (see Ken Forkish’s Pizza Dough recipe)

Basic tomato sauce

  • can whole peeled tomatoes  icon
    28 oz can whole peeled tomatoes
  • fine sea salt icon
    1½ tsp fine sea salt


  • fresh whole basil leaf icon
    Fresh whole basil leaves
  • extra-virgin olive oil icon
    Extra-virgin olive oil

    as needed

  • fresh whole-milk mozzarella cheese (fior di latte) or brinepacked mozzarella di bufala icon
    4 oz fresh whole-milk mozzarella cheese (fior di latte) or brinepacked mozzarella di bufala


  • sea salt icon
    Sea salt

    to serve

  • grated pecorino or romano or parmigiano-reggiano cheese icon
    ¼ cup grated pecorino or romano or parmigiano-reggiano cheese


  • 1Pour the entire contents of the tomato can into the blender. Add the salt. Pulse on the lowest speed setting very briefly, just until the tomatoes are blended. Pour the sauce into a sealable container. I use a deli container with a lid. Label the container with the date and refrigerate what you don’t use. It should keep for 1 week in the refrigerator.
  • 2On the Smart Oven® Pizzaiolo with the interface magnet in place, press and hold the deck temp dial and turn the top temp dial from off to 350°F, then release the deck temp dial. The manual mode light will flash 3 times, then stay on to indicate it is in Manual mode. Turn the Deck Temp to 700°F, the Top Temp to 700°F and the Top Control to Crust only. This can take up to 20 minutes.
  • 3Once the oven has preheated, place the dough on a floured counter and stretch and shape the dough, pressing the gas out with your fingertips towards the rim.
  • 4Place the stretched dough onto the floured peel and dress the pizza with 60g to 80g (1/4 to 1/3 cup) sauce, basil (drizzling each basil leaf with a little olive oil) and mozzarella.
  • 5Cook for about 3 minutes, turning halfway through cooking.
  • 6Sprinkle with salt, drizzle with olive oil and scatter with grated pecorino to serve.
Main course

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