In Whole Foods the other day, I picked up a copy of Fine Cooking’s “Pizza on the Grill” (Taunton, $10). The cover is a closeup of a Fire-roasted Tomato and Cabrales Pizza; and suddenly, pizza on the grill, once again, looked like a very good idea.
The 75 recipes in this book are mostly pizza, but pizza-grilling experts/authors Elizabeth Karmel and Bob Blumer packed in some more goodies. Along with your pizza, or on it, you might include herb-marinated olives, a mellow Onion Marmalade recipe, an Artichoke Spread or infused oil. These items are complimentary to pizza, and look like great enhancements for the crusty, smoky pie you’ll be whipping up.
Starting with the classics such as All-American Pepperoni Pizza or Very Cheesy Pizza, the book takes on more adventurous fare with Smokin’ Salmon Pizza, Kung Pao Cashew Chicken Pizza or Black ‘n Blue Steak Pizza. The also include dessert pizzas as well as wine pairings, salads and more.
In case you haven’t tried making pizza on the grill, the book will give you all the tips you need, (some basics are included below) whether you’re using a charcoal or gas grill. And of course, there is a recipe for handmade pizza dough, how to slap it into shape and get it safely on and off the grill.
The 1-2-3 Techniques for Grilled Pizza from “Pizza on the Grill” from Fine Cooking
Preheat a gas grill or build your charcoal fire and arrange the gray-ashed briquettes for indirect grilling by moving them to one side making sure not to cover the air vent.
1. Place the dough on the cooking grate. For gas grills, place dough over medium-direct heat, close the lid and cook until the bottom is golden brown, about 3 minutes. For charcoal grills, place the dough over the side without briquettes, close the lid and grill for 4 minutes, then check the crust. Rotate the crust if necessary and continue grilling until the bottom is well-marked and evenly browned.
2. Remove the crust from the grill using tongs and a pizza peel or rimless cookie sheet and flip it to reveal the grilled side. Spread the entire grilled surface with the sauce, add the toppings and sprinkle with cheese.
3. If using a gas grill, reset it to indirect heat by turning off one burner (a charcoal grill remains as is). Set the pizza back on the grate over the unlit section, close the lid, and grill until the bottom is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly, 7-10 minutes. Your pizza is ready to eat.