With warm weather on the horizon, now is the perfect time to start exploring the wonders of our house-made pizza dough, which is available for purchase from our online store. Our dough is made using locally sourced The Shepherd’s Grain All-Purpose Flour, and Caputo Dry Yeast, both of which are also available for purchase from our online store.
TAKE PIZZA TO THE NEXT LEVEL ON YOUR GRILL
Ever tried to capture the taste and texture of fire-grilled pizza at home? The best way to do this is on the grill. For many, the idea of grilling pizza seems improbable, but once you understand the process, it is extremely simple.
How to grill pizza
It is important to understand that you grill the pizza dough BEFORE you add the toppings. Divide one of our packages of dough into two or more smaller balls and stretch or roll to your desired thickness. We prefer a thin crust pizza. It’s a good idea to have a few cookie sheets or flexible cutting boards on hand along with a pizza cutter. Flour a cookie sheet and place your rolled-out pizza base on it. Once your grill has reached 400+ degrees, simply slide the pizza from the cookie sheet onto the grate. It will immediately start cooking so there is no danger that the pizza will “melt” between the grate sections.
It only takes a minute or two for the dough to start to bubble. Take a large spatula and give the bubbles a whack to flatten them and then check to see if the bottom is cooked. Once it is a golden color, use the spatula to return the pizza base to your cookie sheet cooked side up. Don’t worry, the uncooked side will have set enough so that it doesn’t stick to the cookie sheet.
Here is where the fun part starts. Load your pizza base with your favorite toppings and then return it to the grill for a few minutes to cook the underside and melt the cheese. Place it on a large cutting board when ready and slice into sections.
Turn grilling pizza into an event
Whether you want to feed 2 people or 10, turn pizza-making into a fun participative event. If you are inviting friends, ask them to bring their favorite toppings to add to your house-made red or white sauce and selection of cheese. Set up the sauces, toppings, and cheese buffet-style so that each person can take a turn – or two - creating a pizza for everyone to share. Each pizza will be unique and delicious and everyone will be able to enjoy hot pizza as it comes off the grill rather than wait to create their own single-serving pizza. Any raw ingredients should be pre-cooked as the pizza will not spend enough time on the grill for them to cook through. This applies equally to raw mushrooms and raw sausage. Unfortunately, if someone places toppings on a completely raw pizza base, your only real option is to bake it in the oven or turn it into a calzone (see below).
A few creative pizza toppings to consider this summer:
For sweet and sour pizza combos:
Sliced fresh figs
Rehydrated prunes or dates
Roasted pork belly
For South of the Border flavors:
Marinated fajita steak
For a taste of the Middle East:
Spiced ground lamb
Cumin-roasted butternut squash
Toasted pine nuts
A taste of the unexpected – dessert pizzas:
Nutella, chocolate, or caramel sauce
SURPRISE THEM WITH CALZONES
Another great way to use pizza dough is to make calzones. The process is very similar to making pizza – you roll out the dough into a round shape to the desired thickness and place the calzone on a floured cookie sheet. Then place your fillings on half of the dough. Using a pastry brush, brush water around the edge before folding the dough over the create a half-circle. Then be sure to use a fork to press and seal the edge of the calzone. You may also want to fold the edge over to create a tighter seal. Make a couple of small slices in the top to create an escape route for any moisture inside. Bake in the oven or on the grill until crispy and golden brown.
Once again, the only real limitation to what you can put in a calzone is your imagination. If you are a traditionalist, you may fill it with tomato sauce, peppers, sausage, and mozzarella cheese. You could also keep it vegetarian by filling your calzone with cheese, corn, and jalapenos. Kick things up to the next level with BBQ chicken calzones – spread your favorite BBQ sauce on the base of your dough, top it with shredded grilled chicken, chopped red onion, cilantro, and mozzarella cheese.
THINK OUTSIDE THE BUN
As you may know, On Safari Foods’ owner, Teresa Carew, is from South Africa. What you may not know is that South Africans are crazy about grilling, which they call “braaing.” A very traditional dish at a South African braai is “roosterbrood” or grill bread. Simply divide our pizza dough into small oblong balls – the size of two golf balls side by side – and let them rise for 40 minutes. Place them on your grill – whether it is powered by propane or charcoal – and turn them every few minutes until they have puffed up and are golden brown. They should also sport some delicious grill marks. Cut them open and slather them with butter and serve while they are warm.
In South Africa, they are often served with boerewors, the traditional sausage (available from our online store) made with lamb, beef, and pork, wine, and coriander seeds. Place your grilled boerewors inside a roosterbrood and cover with tomato and onion relish, caramelized onions, or chutney. It is simply delicious. Another option is to place a chicken sosatie (sweet curried chicken kebab – also available from our online store) inside a roosterbrood. Pull out the skewer and top with caramelized onions or fresh coleslaw. Both are great options when you are camping.
Whatever you decide to make, you can’t go wrong with starting with high-quality ingredients including those sourced from your local farmer’s market. This is a great time to get creative with beautiful fresh locally sourced produce including torpedo onions, patty pan squash, green beans, heirloom tomatoes, and more.
ON SAFARI FOODS
On Safari Foods is a sustainable catering company in Seattle focusing on event, wedding and corporate catering.