I've been saying for years that we should grill a pizza. Tom usually agrees and then time goes on and we remember that we are regular plebs and not Jamie Oliver and will probably burn the house down if we attempt it. But then in April I was visiting San Francisco where my friend Ali (who happens to be a talented professional chef as well as a passionate anti food waste advocate - you should follow her on instagram @endsandstems) grilled a crust to perfection as I watched (okay, stared) and I convinced myself that I could do this! I of course promptly forgot once I returned home until my neighbor turned friend showed me photos of her grilled pizzas last week and I finally added the ingredients to the grocery list.
Tonight I finally did it! Mind you, I've never grilled anything before so I was feeling pretty smug that I pulled it off. I mean, look at that beauty (the pizza, of course, not me)!
I made two pizzas: a BBQ chicken and a spinach and parmesan pie meant to satisfy a craving for Tomasso's in San Francisco. I tried a pizza dough recipe from an old Weber grilling cookbook and I think it worked perfectly. The Weber book suggested "direct medium heat" which made me panic a little because WTF does that even mean!? I read several tutorials online of time that all suggested different grill temperatures. Hmmmmm.... So for the first pizza I went with a grill heated to 550 which ended up being too hot. The second pizza I went for 425-ish which seemed to be just right.
After making the dough and leaving time for it to rise, I rolled it out on a floured surface and then brushed it with olive oil. I'm not sure if I used too much oil or if the problem was a novice griller and/or too hot of a grill, but the first go at crust turned out a little chewy. The second time around I lightly sprayed the crust with some canola oil spray and it worked perfectly. Then, I took the sprayed crust to the grill and tossed it on. I wait 2-3 minutes for the crust to lift easily and show grill marks on the bottom and then I pulled it off, grilled side up. Finally, I topped the crust with sauce and toppings then tossed it back on the grill with closed lid until the cheese was golden brown.
Weber Pizza Dough Recipe
1 Envelope Active Dry Yeast
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
2/3 cup warm water
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling out dough
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
To make the dough: In a medium bowl, combine the yeast, sugar, and water. Stir briefly and let stand until foamy, 5-10 minutes. Add the two cups flour, salt, pepper, and olive oil. Stir until the dough holds together. Transfer to a lightly floured work surface and knead until smooth, 5-10 minutes. Shape into a ball and place in a lightly oiled bowl. Turn the ball to coat surface with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place until the dough doubles in size, 1 to 1.5 hours.
I hope these tips help from my trial and error, I can't wait to try this again with some new toppings!