The best thing about making your own pizza is the ability to include everything you love and nothing you don’t. From the sauce (red or white? pesto or olive oil?) to the crust (thick or thin? flatbread or multigrain?) to the toppings, you can handpick your perfect combination to make your very own pie. What’s not to love?
And in the seasons where weather permits outdoor dining, grilling homemade pizzas makes entertaining easy and appetizing.
Try to keep it simple and use the ingredients readily available. For mid-summer, this pizza features cherry tomatoes, fresh basil pesto and lots of fresh Wisconsin Mozzarella. When cooked, a light and fresh flavor is born and the smell of summer grilling resonates throughout the evening.
For more grilled pizza combinations and inspiration, see the summer 2013 online magazine Grate. Pair. Share.
1 1/4 cups warm water
2 packages dry yeast
1 tablespoon honey
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for kneading
1/2 cup pesto
1 cup (8 ounces) Wisconsin Mozzarella Cheese
1 cup sliced portobello mushrooms
1/2 cup sliced prosciutto
1 cup cherry tomatoes
For the dough, combine the water, yeast, honey and olive oil in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add 3 cups flour, then the salt, and mix. While mixing, add 1 more cup of flour, or enough to make a soft dough. Knead the dough on low to medium speed for about 10 minutes until smooth, sprinkling it with flour, if necessary, to keep it from sticking to the bowl.
When the dough is ready, turn it out onto a floured board and knead by hand a dozen times. It should be smooth and elastic. Place the dough in a well-oiled bowl and turn it several times to cover it lightly with oil. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel. Allow the dough to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Divide the dough into 6 equal parts and roll each one into a smooth ball. Place the balls on a baking sheet and cover them with a damp towel. Allow the dough to rest for 10 minutes. Use immediately, or refrigerate for up to 4 hours.
If you’ve chilled the dough, take it out of the refrigerator approximately 30 minutes before starting the pizzas to let it come to room temperature. Roll and stretch each ball into a rough 8-inch circle and place them all on baking sheets sprinkled with cornmeal. (You will be able to fit 2 pizzas on each 18- by 13-inch baking sheet.)
Prep the grill by placing it on medium heat. Place either a sheet of aluminum foil or a metal pizza pan on top of the grill.
Place a small amount of olive oil in your hand, and coat one side of the dough. Rest the olive-oiled side of the dough down on the tin foil or pan. Let grill for about 5 minutes or until underside is crisp and slightly golden but not burned.
Flip the pizza over as quickly and smoothly as possible and cover the top with pesto, spreading all the way to the edges. Then layer on the ingredients as you prefer and close the lid of the grill. In about 3-4 minutes, check if ingredients are warmed. If the pizza appears to need more time, let it grill another 2-3 minutes, then pull it off and place on a serving tray, slice and serve.