Say cheese, then tuck right in. Picture by Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times

Roasted aubergine and buffalo mozzarella pizza 

Serves 4

Ingredients

For the dough

  • 1½ tsp active dry yeast
  • 420ml warm, not hot, water
  • 2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for the bowl
  • 575g all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp course salt

For the toppings

  • 900g aubergine, cut into 2.5cm cubes 
  • Extra virgin olive oil, as needed
  • Kosher salt, as needed
  • Black pepper, as needed
  • ½ cup canned plum tomatoes, puréed
  • 4 to 8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced, to taste
  • Red pepper flakes, as needed
  • 230g fresh buffalo mozzarella
  • Basil leaves, torn into pieces
  • Flaky sea salt

Method

Make the dough

  1. Mix the yeast, warm water and olive oil in the bowl of an electric stand mixer or food processor, and let the mixture 
  2. sit until the yeast is foamy, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add flour and salt, and using the dough hook or food processor blade, beat or pulse it until a smooth, slightly elastic dough forms, 2 to 3 minutes. 
  4. Lightly coat a bowl with olive oil, place dough in the bowl, and turn the dough to coat it with oil. Cover the bowl loosely with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap, place in the refrigerator and let it sit overnight.
  5. Divide the dough in quarters, and shape each piece into a tight, compact ball. 
  6. Place the dough balls on a lightly oiled baking sheet or plate, loosely cover with plastic wrap and let them rise in the refrigerator for another 1 to 2 hours (or up to 6 hours).
  7. When ready to bake the pizzas, place racks in the top third and bottom third of the oven. 
  8. Put a pizza stone on top rack, and heat oven to 230ºC.

Prepare the toppings

  1. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the aubergine generously with oil, salt and pepper. 
  2. Roast aubergine on the bottom rack until caramelised and tender, 40 to 45 minutes, tossing halfway through. Remove from the oven and raise the oven heat to 260ºC.
  3. On a piece of parchment paper, stretch out one of the balls of dough to a 30cm round. 
  4. Spread 2 tablespoons tomato purée on top, leaving a 1cm border. 
  5. Scatter on ¼ of the sliced garlic, a large pinch of red-pepper flakes and drizzle with oil to taste.
  6. Arrange ¼ of the roasted aubergine on top. 
  7. Use a pizza peel or cookie sheet to slide the parchment onto the pizza stone. 
  8. Bake until crispy and golden on the top and bottom, 7 to 10 minutes. Use tongs to pull the pizza out of the oven and onto a wire rack to cool.
  9. Immediately top with chunks of cheese, pulling it apart with your hands into bite-size pieces. 
  10. Top with basil, more oil to taste and flaky sea salt. 
  11. Repeat with the remaining dough and toppings.

The New York Times