Pizza on grill

The trickiest part to getting restaurant-quality pizza crust is getting the oven hot enough. A powerful gas barbecue (or conventional oven that provides high temperature) and a high-quality pizza stone are the keys to success.

Makes 2 pizzas

Ingredients

For dough:

2 cups bread flour or “00” flour

1 cup lukewarm water

3 tsp instant dry yeast

1 pinch of sugar

1.5 tsp fine sea salt

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Semolina for sliding pizza onto stone

For Pizza Margherita toppings:

2/3 cup passata, divided in half

Handful of fresh basil leaves

300g mozzarella, divided in half

Extra virgin olive oil and salt and pepper to season

For Pizza Bianco with burrata, cremini mushrooms, olives, and chili toppings:

2 x 200g burrata

2 handfuls of shredded cheese such as a mixture of parmesan and mozzarella

1 large handful of cremini or brown button mushrooms, sliced

1 handful of marinated olives in olive oil

Dried chili flakes or one long red chili, thinly sliced (deseeded depending on your heat tolerance)

Extra virgin olive oil and salt and pepper to season

Special equipment:

Gas barbecue (Mine is a Weber S-670GBS Gas grill, absolutely THE BEST!)

Pizza stone with stainless steel baking sheet (I used cordierite stone, which is the most durable and efficient type of pizza stones, mine is from Weber, see the one that I used here)

Recipe Preparation

In a small bowl, mix together water, sugar, and yeast and whisk to combine. Let sit for 5-8 min until foamy.

In a large mixing bowl, mix together flour, sea salt and foamy yeast mixture with a wooden spoon until a shaggy dough is formed. Add olive oil and mix again to combine until no dry bits remain on the bottom of the bowl. Roll out the dough onto a clean, lightly dusted countertop, then fold and stretch the dough repeatedly with the heel of your palm until elastic and smooth, about 5-8 minutes. Transfer the dough into a lightly oiled large bowl and cover with silicon wrap or damp kitchen cloth. Let dough rise until double its size (about 1-1.5 hours).

Alternatively:

(1) Put the kneaded dough (without rising), covered, directly into the fridge overnight and bring out to rise at room temperature until it doubles in size (about 2-3 hours, depending on temperature of room). Dough should have large bubbles all over the top.

(2) Put kneaded dough into a lightly oiled plastic food bag, then remove it into a clean bowl. Cover and let rise at room temperature until it doubles in size (about 6+ hours, depending on temperature of room). Dough should have large bubbles all over the top.

Preheat barbecue/oven

About 15-30 minutes before dough is ready to be rolled out, preheat barbecue to 300C or conventional oven to the highest temperature (my oven’s highest setting is 275C), with pizza stone on rack in middle.

For dough

Cut dough into two equal portions and form each into a rough ball. Working with one at a time, roll out onto a clean and lightly floured surface. Gently spread out with your fingers, avoiding the edges, then lightly dust with flour and wipe around the top if there are sticky patches. Rotate and keep stretching until a round-ish shape is formed. Each pizza should be about 20-25cm in diameter.

Lightly sprinkle semolina on the metal sheet and gently place the shaped dough onto it.

For Pizza Margherita:

Spread half of the passata onto the dough, leaving 2-3cm for crust, then sprinkle evenly with mozzarella, or, if you are using sliced mozzarella, place slices evenly onto dough. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil again. Place in barbecue on pizza stone for 7 minutes or oven for 9 to 11 minutes, depending on temperature. When ready, crust should be puffed up and golden, with a few charred spots. Base should be crispy and brown all around. Sprinkle with fresh basil leaves before serving.

For Pizza Bianco with Burrata, Cremini, Olives, and Chili:

Sprinkle parmesan and mozzarella mixture on dough, leaving 2-3cm for crust. Tear 1 burrata into smaller pieces and spread around pizza, with half the sliced cremini and olives, without overlapping. Sprinkle with chili flakes or chili slices, salt, and pepper. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and place on pizza stone in barbecue for 7 minutes or oven for 9 to 11 minutes, depending on temperature. When ready, crust should be puffed up and golden with a few charred spots. Base should be crispy and brown all around. Sprinkle with fresh basil leaves before serving.

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