Prepare Herbal Pizza Combinations: Pesto Pizza with Tomato & Eggplant

While you can use any good store-bought pesto, this is a great way to feature your own homemade version and use up the bounty of basil growing in your garden. MAKES ONE 15-INCH PIZZA

• 1 cup chopped eggplant
• 1 sweet red pepper, chopped (about 3/4 cup)
• 1/2 tablespoon minced fresh oregano
• 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
• 3/4 cup homemade or prepared pesto sauce
• 1 (12- to 14-ounce) prepared pizza dough
• 3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
• 1/2 cup shredded provolone cheese
• 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
• 1 1/2 cups sliced firm tomatoes (about 5 roma-style tomatoes)
• 1/2 tablespoon minced fresh marjoram

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Toss eggplant, red pepper and oregano with olive oil. Spread single layer in a baking sheet or shallow pan and roast 8 to 12 minutes, or until eggplant is tender and lightly browned; set aside.

2. To make pizza, spread pesto evenly over prepared pizza dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Sprinkle with mozzarella, provolone and Parmesan cheese. Arrange tomato slices over entire pizza just like you would for pepperoni. Top with roasted eggplant mixture and marjoram. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until crust is golden and cheese is bubbly. 

Kris Wetherbee is a contributing editor who wrangles her herb garden in western Oregon.

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