Monday, May 18, 2009

Pizza Love

A summer staple this year is going to be homemade pizza. We have finally convinced the boys it is an edible item and they take great delight in the eating of it. I love the dough recipe given to me by my sister and I find I can prep it early and just let it rise until dinner time, with the occasional punch to keep it in the bowl. Her recipe is simple, especially when I use the Kitchenaid with dough hook attachment to do all the work. And there is no heating house up as I have finally figured out the best way to grill it all outside on the BBQ.

Pizza Night

I thought I would share the recipe and cooking method as I know I have other mama readers with small children that would love to try this out. It is fun too as even messy crazy toddlers can handle tossing cheese on the dough and seeing the veggies be piled onto the top.

I let the boys handle a small ball of dough to learn about the process but we did not cook it up. Grubby toddler fingernails are not the best seasoning for what I like to think is pretty tasty food.

So, dough recipe first

:: Take 1 1/2 tsp dry active yeast, 1 1/2 cup warm water and 1 Tbl sugar and combine in a smallish bowl, let yeast do its job and wait for some bubbling foaming action on top.

:: Add 2 Tbl olive oil and 1 1/2 tsp salt to foamy liquid.

:: Dump 2 cups flour (I use combo whole wheat and white whole wheat) into Kitchenaid bowl, then dump liquid on top. Make sure you have the dough hook attached and let it do all the work. I usually let it stir for a minute, check to make sure a ball is forming and if it looks too loose/wet I add flour (willy nilly) until a ball forms on the hook.

:: Knead it via machine for a few minutes, maybe 4 or 5, until a smooth ball is formed.

:: Oil a large bowl and place your dough in it, cover with a tea towel and leave it to rise for 20 minutes or until dinner time, punch it occasionally (or whenever you remember it is there). That is it. It makes great calzones and rolls too.

Tim discovered a simple 'sauce' for the pizzas. We use straight tomato paste with some added Italian dry herbs and some pepper. It works wonderfully.

Pizza Night

Then you know the rest of the drill. We try to put as much veg on ours as possible and show the boys what we are doing, but I dare not contaminate their designated pizza as it may mean total protest come table time.

So the last thing is the grill. What works here is a sheet of foil (yeah, not a great option, but I am working on getting a good flat cookie pan) on the grill surface. I turn up the burners to high during pre-heat until the temp reads 400 or so, then turn off one whole side and adjust the other to keep the temp around 400. I place the pizza on the foil on the 'off' side and rotate them once during cooking.

Pizza Night

It takes about 12-14 minutes, I usually feel the crust and bottom for doneness. I love cooking them this way as there is relatively no mess, no heat in the house and the pizza tastes so good. Mmmm.

Let me know if you try it.. It took a few tries until I had the feel of the dough prep, but now it is easy as, well, pizza pie. I just wish I could toss the dough as well as that guy in the Mastercard commercial. Now that is a pizza. Cheers and happy 'almost' summer eating.


brook said...

yummmy. i love pizza! sorry to miss you in sb this weekend. it was absolute chaos, but i'm up in portland now getting ready to work on thursday, and hanging in coffee shops until my furniture comes tomorrow. :) hope you had a great weekend!!

LauraC said...

I'll definitely be trying this! Jon worked at a pizza place every summer of high school so he can throw pizzas like a champ.

At this pizza place, they have a special pizza that may be the best pizza I've ever eaten. Ever. It is a peanut butter pizza. Dough, a thin layer of peanut butter, sauce, cheese, pepperoni (and some people get jalapenos). When warm, the peanut butter melts and the flavor is very thai. YUMMO!

We'll be introducing N&A to their first peanut butter pizza this summer!

Beth said...

We love pizza too, and I've been wanting to try grilling it for a while, so thanks for the good directions! We also do the whole wheat/white flour combination, so it tastes really good, but is also a little bit more healthy. It is the girls' favorite thing, and you are right, they love spreading the sauce and sprinkling the cheese. We usually do just plain for them, but last time they asked for corn and arugula on top!

Claroux said...

YUM! We are all about the homemade pizza in this house. Especially since pizza is the one thing I have been in love with since day 1 of this pregnancy. I'll have to email you the ingredients of the one me make for the girls. It's "power packed" with "sneaky" protein and such.

Em Natural said...

mMM! bbQ pizza, we have yet to try the recipe on the que i can't wait to try it out. Lately with the sun's emergence michael and i have been using our barbi a lot!
love you lots!

The Adventures of Carrie, Brook, Finn and Reid said...

My mouth is watering.

The boys love homemade pizza, as do we. We use our pizza stone on the BBQ too. Have you tried this? You have to heat it up for abut 20 minutes, but it makes the crust nice and crisp.

One of the boys' favorite pizzas is "green pizza". WW crust, and a sauce of pureed (steamed) spinach, ricotta, whatever spices you want and some pinenuts. Topped with mozz and, OF COURSE, pineapple. My Brooklyn-born father-in-law curses when we eat it, but it's really good and a score with F & R.

I really like this dough recipe and will be trying it, hopefully this weekend!