Our very good friends from Spokane are here visiting for the long weekend. They brought with themselves a half crazed chihuahua, an incredibly beautiful daughter that is growing up so quickly, a cooler full of yummy food that they blessed us with, and our new favorite recipe, BBQ Pizza.
They pulled out this pre-made dough and divided into fifths and rolled it out, then set it aside. Then while enjoying a glass of red wine, they began to prepare a plethora of delicious fresh toppings, everything from pepperoni to sliced carrots and Feta Cheese. It took me back to an evening I spent soaking in the magic of dinner at a Benny Hanna's in Hawaii.
Once all preparations had been made, we were invited to create our own unique pizza delights. While the kids played it safe with the pepperoni, olives, and pizza cheese, I on the otherhand, was feeling a bit sassy! I started with a small pinch of cheese, just for a base. Next I went for a bit of chicken, sun dried tomatoes, fresh diced garlic, olives, lemon basil leaves, and chunks of mozzarella, and on the other half, Canadian Bacon, pepperoni, pineapple, olives and cheese. After it was BBQ'd, I topped it off with fresh tomatoes and feta cheese. This was a taste sensation to behold.
After enjoying a few half and half creations, our budding culinary giant, Gavin, suggested dessert pizza. The kids in a display of brilliance began with butter, cinnamon and sugar, and a thin layer of peanut butter. Then in a stroke of sheer genius they chopped up Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, added torn up marshmallows, and a sprinkling of dark chocolate chips. I have only one thing to say.... HAVE MERCY! Believe me when I say, these were nothing short of a cruise ship masterpiece.
To re-create this dinner event in your own backyard, follow these simple directions. I would love to hear what new and creative toppings you come up with.
The whole process starts with gathering all your favorite topping and dicing them up. Roll out the pizza dough to fairly thin crusts and stack them on waxed paper. Begin with 6-8 inch terracotta pot bottoms and put them on the bbq on low heat with a coating of olive oil inside. Allow the pots so slowly heat up and then apply a second coating of olive oil.
Meanwhile, begin your pizza by sprinkling a plate with cornmeal to both help prevent sticking and add a crispy bottom to your pizza. Add your desired toppings and then take it to the bbq. Carefully move your pizza to one of the hot pots on the grill. Keeping the heat low, cook your pizza for 8-10 minutes watching the crust til it gets golden brown on the edges.
One thing to keep in mind is that the thicker you pile your toppings the longer it will take to cook your pizza. You also run the risk of burning the edges and having a doughy middle.
If you have always had the desire to get crazy and walk on the wild side, here is your opportunity. Get some dough, a good bottle of wine, a full tank of propane, and some good friends and experience BBQ'd Italiano. CHOW!