I recently started doing a little menu planning. When I made the first weekly menu, I knew exactly what I wanted to do first: I wanted to make pizza on the grill. I've been wanting to make this for a while because I had heard this crazy rumor that you could, in fact, make pizza on the grill, but I was somewhat skeptical. My doubts faded just as soon as I'd had my first bite, though - this was some of the best pizza I've ever made.
I used frozen bread dough, because that was what I had on hand, though making homemade dough would probably be even better. First of all, it works best to make smaller, thinner pizzas than normal so that you can manage them easier on the grill. Work the dough into a roundish (or possibly squarish) shape. Take some olive oil and brush it on one side, and also spray or brush oil onto the grill. Put the oiled side of the bread directly onto the grill, heated to medium heat. Soon it will start to rise up a bit and cook. While it is cooking, brush oil onto the other side. When it looks done, flip it over. It should look something like this:
(ooh - what nice grill marks!)
Now begin to assemble the toppings. Jeff and I like somewhat non-traditional toppings, so for one we used pesto and tomatoes with spinach and fresh parmesan. I would recommend using just a couple of toppings - you don't want to over-laden the dough.
For the other two, we used carmalized onions, olive oil with rosemary fresh from our garden, and topped it with some fresh parmesan. (This was my favorite.) If you want the toppings to cook some while the bottom of the pizza cooks, then close the grill lid. Otherwise, you can just leave it open and admire your handiwork while congratulating yourself on being cool enough to grill pizza. Cook until the bottom looks done, maybe another 5 minutes.
This works really well for me for a number of reasons:
1) cooking outside in the summer always is much more pleasant than cooking inside. Except maybe when you live in South Carolina and it's still over 90 with 97% humidity at 6pm, in which case you might just want to use the AC.
2) You don't need tons of cheese - and as someone who gets certain digestive um... unpleasantries with lots of dairy, it's nice to eat delicious pizza that isn't drowning in cheese.
3) Pizza made on the grill is aesthetically pleasing.
And lastly, 4) I supposed because of the higher heat or something the dough tastes much better than regular dough cooked in an oven. It tasted much more like something I'd get in a nice, even upscale pizza place than when I have used the same frozen dough in the oven.
This meal will definitely be in high rotation this summer - I'm excited to try out some other interesting combinations. Anyone with a favorite unique or unusual topping?