If you’ve never thought about grilling pizza, you’ll be amazed at how easily your backyard barbecue turns into a pizza oven. Charcoal or gas, intense heat contributes to a truly unforgettable crust and taste. And no, the crust will not sag through the grate.
It’s easy enough to make barbecue pizza any day of the week. This is great party food. Imagine your own outdoor Italian pizzeria where you offer your guests pre-grilled crusts and a variety of toppings. No one will miss hot dogs and hamburgers. And for dessert? Add your favorite chocolate hazelnut spread, fresh sliced strawberries, and dust with powdered sugar to the hot grilled dough.
This recipe makes four individual oblong pizzas.
QUICK RISING DOUGH
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons instant yeast (fast-growing)
1 1/4 cups tap water, very warm to the touch but not hot
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons sea salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 cup mashed or chopped canned unsalted San Marzano tomatoes (or canned Italian plum tomatoes)
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (Nardini’s own brand)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
(Or use That Guy’s pizza sauce for a homemade flavor)
FILLINGS (Try different combinations)
Vegetables (fried mushrooms, thinly sliced red onion, grilled zucchini and eggplant, olives)
Meat (thinly sliced prosciutto, cooked and crumbled Italian sausage, thinly sliced pancetta)
Cheese (grated mozzarella or friulano or fresh imported Asiago cheese, ricotta, bocconcini slices, brie)
Herbs and spices (fresh basil leaves, dried oregano, rosemary, thyme)
Extra virgin olive oil (Nardini’s own brand)
Preheat barbecue to 500 F or higher.
Prepare a baking sheet by drizzling with plenty of olive oil. Postpone.
To make by hand, place the flour in a large, shallow bowl. Add yeast and stir.
Measure out the water with a measuring cup. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir. Pour liquid mixture into flour mixture. Use a wooden spoon for mixing.
Gather the dough together with your hands and then place it on a floured work surface. The dough will look shaggy and lumpy.
Knead for about 10 minutes. Dust some more flour if necessary. When the dough is smooth and pliable, form it into a ball. Divide into four parts, depending on your preference. Place each serving on the prepared baking sheet, dredge the dough in the oil. Set about four inches apart. Cover lightly with plastic wrap. Leave on a table or other draught-free place and let rest while you prepare the pizza topping. (Use a mixer to knead the dough).
After 30 minutes the dough should rise. Cut a piece of parchment paper, one for each serving, large enough to roll out and shape. Use your fingers to create an oblong shape about a quarter of an inch thick. Brush with olive oil. You can stack the dough by separating them with parchment paper.
For grilling, use the parchment paper as a guide to flip the dough right on the grill, peeling off the parchment paper. Work quickly to place a few pieces of dough on the grill and close the lid to keep warm. After a few minutes, use tongs to turn the pizza over to toast the other side. The dough is ready when it has risen and turned golden with charred marks from the grill.
If using immediately, reduce heat. While still on the grill, pour over the sauce, sprinkle with cheese, toppings and drizzle with a little olive oil. Close the lid for a minute or two. Remove carefully and serve.
For a pizza party, multiply the recipe as needed. The dough can be pre-grilled and placed on cooling racks. Then let guests make their own pizza and return to the low to medium heat grill to warm up.
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