There's something about having the resident teens home on a summer weeknight that makes grilling-the-pizza-rather-than-baking-it make sense. We could do this together, feeding our souls and our stomachs, too. I did the prep and they did the cooking … everyone got exactly what they wanted on their crust!
Choices of toppings: caramelized onions, shredded mozzarella, sliced fresh mozzarella, roasted red peppers, fresh basil, grated parmesan, pepperoni, sliced olives … and it looks like Ben got caught with his hand in the 'cookie olive jar'! Of course, you can prepare whatever toppings you want. Try prosciutto, Italian sausage, fresh tomatoes, peppers, sundried tomatoes, artichokes … whatever you like!
For me, pizza is very much about the crust. If the crust isn't right, it makes me not want to eat any of it. I've always struggled with making the right crust and I think I learned the key … Don't let the dough rise. You still get the yeasty texture, but not the doughy one. When the dough is left to rise, the result is more of a bread texture that I don't care for in pizza crust. If you do, then by all means, let your dough rise. It's your kitchen. It's difficult to get a home oven hot enough to char the crust so I prefer grilling pizza to baking it. The grill is perfect for charring!
I had read the suggestion of shaping your dough, then putting the disks on floured parchment paper, but I used wax paper instead. Please, I IMPLORE you, do not make that mistake! Even though I floured the wax paper, the dough still stuck to it. It was quite a mess! Use parchment paper, or better yet, make the disks and put only one layer on a cookie sheet rather than stacking them with parchment paper. Another suggestion I would make is to shape them, put them in the refrigerator, THEN start the grill and set out the condiments. I think this would allow the dough to set a bit and perhaps making handling it at the grill just a little easier without affecting the cooking time.
[Incidentally, I flipped the TV on today while I ate lunch and guess what Ina Garten was making … grilled pizza! She allowed her dough to rise, then divided it into eighths, then refrigerated it. She shaped her pizza rounds at the grill by pulling them. That might work better for you.]
You should have a hot part of the grill and a cooler part. If you have a charcoal grill, move the coals to one side after they get hot. If you use a gas grill, turn one portion on high heat, and the other on medium or low.
Just before grilling, brush the disks with a little olive oil, then place the dough oil-side-down on the cool part of the grill. Believe it or not, the dough will not fall through!
Do not touch the dough for the first minute. When it starts to brown a bit on the bottom, put your toppings on, let the toppings warm a bit , then move it to the hotter part of the grill to finish it off.
It's ideal to work with 2-3 pizza rounds at a time because you can put the lid on to help the cheese melt better. However, when making pizzas for several hungry people, this probably won't work very well.
For this reason, I think it would make a perfect Date-at-Home Meal … cooking together is a great accompaniment to good conversation.
Yum! So good with a green salad. I hope you'll try it!