When I grew up, lunch on Saturdays was always hot dogs (sometimes sandwiches) and dinner was often pizza. Which was perfectly fine with me because I absolutely love pizza. Sometimes, Mama would make homemade pizzas, using leftover spaghetti sauce and we’d get to top our own pizzas. Those were always my favorite because they were meaty and heavy with my favorite toppings.
We’ve been making homemade pizzas for a while now. I had shared a grilled pizza dough recipe a while ago, which is one of the standard recipes we used all of the time on the grill and in the house. However, because I’m not one to leave things alone, I’ve continued to fiddle with the recipe and research more recipes and I’ve come up with a pretty darn good recipe that we’ve been using for the past few months.
This recipe makes two fourteen-inch (sort of) pizzas, or four “personal” sized pizzas if you divide the dough into smaller pieces. One of the things I love about this dough is that it bakes up light and crispy – especially if you use a pizza stone and a screaming hot oven.
A few things to know:
- Using a pizza stone makes a MUCH better crust. And pre-heat the stone while you’re pre-heating your oven. Then the crust will crisp quickly when it hits that hot stone.
- Cook in a HOT (HOT!) oven – I usually cook mine at 500 degrees (F). If I didn’t set off all of the safety mechanisms on my stove and range hood, I’d do it hotter, but I’ve learned that it’s not worth having all the alarms go off for 50 degrees more heat.
- Rising time is important. Plan your meal prep with enough time to allow at least 45 minutes for the dough to rise. You really can’t rush the little yeasties. Patience will pay off.
^^ before the rise ^^
^^ after 45 min rise time ^^
- Get some grits. I know this sounds crazy, but we have learned (the hard way) that your pizzas will not slide off of a peel or cutting board very well once the dough is a little warm from rolling it out and then heavy from adding the toppings. Last week we had cheese, dough, etc. all over my oven door and floor because of an uncooperative pizza that didn’t want to slide off of the peel.
Grits (corn meal) under your dough (before you top your pizza) will act like little marbles and let the pizza slide right off of the peel. And they add some crunch to your crust!
- If you don’t have grits (you’re not from the South, are you?) then you can always roll your dough out on parchment (not wax) paper and bake the pizza on the parchment paper. You just have to be careful because the parchment gets really crispy (brittle) in the oven and makes it a little tricky to pull the pizza out of the oven.
- You can make this in a stand mixer or in your food processor. I’ve done it both ways. It usually depends on which appliance happens to be out on my counter at the time (or which is clean and not dirty!) Heck, you can even mix this by hand if you want. It’ll be a good workout for you.
- We usually get two meals (at least) out of this pizza-making session. One the night we make them and then one for lunch or supper a few days later. And it’s WAY cheaper than takeout pizza (and SO MUCH tastier!)
1 cup very warm water
2 1/4 tsp yeast
1 Tbsp honey
2 tsp salt
2-3 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese (like Kraft Parmesan)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp Italian Seasoning
~3 Cups flour (I used King Arthur White Whole Wheat flour)
- In a mixing bowl, combine water, yeast & honey. Let the yeast “bloom” for about 5 minutes.
- Add the oil, half of the flour (1.5 cups) and mix with a dough hook.
- While mixing, add the Italian Seasoning, salt and gradually add the remaining flour a little at a time until the dough begins to form a ball and pull away from the sides of the bowl.
- Knead for 6 minutes.
- Once the time has elapsed, remove the dough hook and form the dough into a ball.
- Lightly oil the mixing bowl and put the dough ball back in. Cover with a towel and let rise in the for 45 minutes to an hour. (preheat your oven while dough is rising)
Here’s our little pizza making session Saturday night:
^^ Rolling out the dough – topping the kids’ pizza ^^
^^ SuperMan making his monster pizza with 45 toppings. I swear it weight 10 pounds! ^^
^^ Topping my BBQ Chicken pizza. ^^
^^ The masterpiece ready for the oven. ^^
^^ SuperMan says quit taking pictures and let’s eat! ^^