Summer food: Pizza on the Grill
There's something wonderful about grilled pizza. The bottom edge of the crust is crisp and brown. The top is chewy. And the whole lovely thing, from crust to toppings, is infused with the wonderful flavor of the grill. If you've never grilled a pizza yourself, you might think it is difficult, but it's not. Here are a few pointers to get you going.
1. Start with a good pizza dough recipe like this one. Once you've allowed the dough to rise an hour or so, punch it down and divide the dough into pieces about the size of tennis balls. Make sure the dough has enough flour kneaded in so as not to be sticky. Roll the dough fairly thin, and place each round on a floured cookie sheet to rest until you are ready to carry it out to the grill.
2. Preheat the grill to a medium heat.
3. Gather your pizza sauce (here are some amazing ideas) and all the ingredients you plan to use. For grilled pizza, you quickly add toppings after you put the dough on the grill, so get organized before you go out to the grill. I put all my toppings in small bowls on a cookie sheet for easy transport.
4. Flop a round of dough directly on the preheated grill. Don't worry if it lands a little crooked-- for grilled pizza, rustic is great. Quickly spread on a thin layer of sauce and a sprinkle of cheese, then add your other toppings. Grilled pizza will turn out better if you're not too heavy-handed with the toppings. Once you've got your toppings on your pizza, add just a bit more cheese, and shut the lid of the barbecue grill.
5. Let it cook for a couple minutes, until the underside of the crust just starts to brown. Using a large long-handled spatula, rotate the pizza a quarter turn. Close the grill, and let it cook for a couple more minutes, until the bottom of the crust is cross-hatched with nice medium brown markings, and the cheese on the top of the pizza has melted.
6. Remove your pizza from the grill and place it on a cookie sheet to bring indoors to cut. Add your next round of dough to the grill and repeat with more toppings. I love to make each pizza different. The one on the left in the picture above has pepperoni, mushrooms, fresh spinach, and cheese. The one on the right is topped with cheese, bacon bits, and little dabs of cream cheese all over the surface.Yum! Have you grilled pizza before? What toppings are your favorites?