One of my favorite seasons has arrived – college football season! It’s a fall Saturday football tradition at our house to eat pizza and yell Roll Tide! Our favorite? Any pizza grilled on a stone. Stone grilled pizza is so fabulous; there’s nothing better than a perfectly crispy crust with a slightly smokey taste. It’s as close to brick oven pizza as you can get. But if you don’t have a stone, this recipe works great in the oven too. Today’s pick, a simply delicious Margherita pizza.
About a 1/2 cup pizza sauce or marinara
8 ounces fresh mozzarella
3 medium fresh tomatoes
10-12 fresh basil leaves
Pizza seasoning (optional)
16 ounce package of thawed frozen prepared pizza dough (follow package directions for rising) or your favorite recipe.
Prepare dough; roll into 12 inch diameter and transfer to pizza pan or stone. (I spread a little yellow cornmeal on the pan or stone first). Cover with plastic wrap and set aside.
Thinly slice tomatoes; set out on paper towels to absorb moisture. Pat dry.
Thinly slice mozzarella.
Chiffonade the basil. (Stack basil leaves and roll them tightly, then thinly slice the leaves perpendicular to the roll).
Spread sauce on top of dough. Don’t go heavy with the sauce; you just want to cover the dough in a thin layer. Top with tomato slices, then mozzarella. Sprinkle on pizza seasoning.
Keep in mind some grills run hotter that others so your baking times may vary. My advice: keep an eye on your pie.
Cover grates with a sheet of heavy duty aluminum foil. Place stone with prepared pizza on top of foil. Grill should be COLD. If you put a cold stone on a hot grill it will break the stone.
Turn on all 3 burners – front, middle and back, to HIGH. Close lid and cook for 15 minutes. Note: if moisture from the mozzarella pools on top while baking, take some paper towels and blot to absorb it.
Turn middle burner down to LOW. Rotate pizza (not stone) 90 degrees. I use a large cake/pizza spatula to do this. Close lid and cook another 10 minutes.
Carefully lift one side of the pizza slightly to check bottom crust for doneness. Continue to cook another 5 minutes if needed. Move pizza to cutting board , top with basil and serve. Leave stone on grill until totally cooled. Follow package directions for cleaning.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Bake 10-12 minutes, until dough is puffed and golden and cheese is melted. Move pizza to cutting board. Top with basil and serve.
Note: if moisture from the mozzarella pools on top while baking, take some paper towels and blot to absorb it.