Too Hot to Cook a Pizza? Never!

When it’s just too hot to turn on the oven, even with air conditioning, we still crave pizza.  Of course. What to do?  We throw it on the grill.  The kids think it’s a blast, and it keeps the kitchen cool and the cleanup quick.

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First, assemble all your ingredients.  My favorite pizza dough recipe is from King Arthur Flour (find it here), but be aware that it rests in the frig overnight, so you have to plan ahead. Thus, I usually use this recipe instead, also from King Arthur. And don’t feel guilty if you buy pizza dough…there’s no shame in that!  Those dough makers gotta support their families, too.

Easiest Pizza Crust

  • 2 cups lukewarm water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast or instant yeast; or 1 packet active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, optional
  • 5 1/2 to 6 cups all purpose flour, enough to make a soft, smooth dough
  • 2 tablespoons Pizza Dough Flavor, optional

Directions

1) Dissolve the sugar, yeast, and salt in the lukewarm water (and olive oil, if you’re using it).
2) Add the flour, starting with 5 1/2 cups and adding more as necessary to make a soft, smooth dough.
3) Knead the dough (with your hands, a mixer, or your bread machine set on the dough cycle) until it’s smooth and elastic, about 7 to 10 minutes.
4) Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl or other container, cover it, and let it rise for 1 to 2 hours, whatever fits your schedule.
5) Gently deflate the dough, and divide it into six or eight pieces, depending on how hungry your people are. We do eight, then a few of us eat more than one pizza.I’m not naming names.

Once your dough is ready, gather everyone around…the process goes really quickly.  Brush the grill with olive oil, and heat to around 500 degrees.

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Stretch each piece of dough to a rough (very rough in our case) circle, as thin as you can without tearing it. Toss a couple on the grill and cook, lid open, for about 4-5 minutes, until they release from the grill.

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As soon as you flip the crust, quickly add the toppings.  Don’t use any raw toppings, like onions, since you’re just heating, not really cooking them.  If you like raw onions, feel free to use them, of course.

Close the lid and let it cook until the cheese melts, another 4-6 minutes. This one has roasted red peppers, kalamata olives, feta, and some mozzarella. Yum.  Prosciutto is great on this, too, but we ran out. Midnight snacking, probably.

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The hooligans are pepperoni, sauce, and cheese purists, for the most part. Although the middle one does like my pear and Gorgonzola and usually shares it with me.

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Who wouldn’t like this?  Pesto, pears, Gorgonzola, and a little mozzarella for melting, inspired by my favorite flatbread at Brewery City in Washington.

So the next time the mercury’s rising and your family wants pizza, forget the takeout and take it out to the grill.  It’s great family time and (could be) much more healthy…and everyone gets just what they want on their pie, for much less than even a frozen pizza!

Linking up to The Frugal Girls

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