Grilled pizza party

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One of my favorite things to do is have food inspired parties. It helps if everyone gets involved in the process and gives everyone a chance to contribute. It’s great for families and friends of all ages and culinary skill levels. Grilling pizza is a fun, albeit sometimes laborious, way to cook a crowd friendly dish. So with that being said, I’ll let you know how I grill pizza and give some tips on how to make it fun and easier for you.So let’s talk about the dough, because this will make or break the experience. The simplest way is to buy pre-made bread-like dough. An example would be Boboli or Freschetta, which can usually found in or around the bread aisle. This is best for the speed of grilling pizza because you can just make your pie and put in on the grill. Then there is fresh uncooked dough. This will add significant time to your experience, but the flavors are so fresh and delicious that it’s seriously worth the extra steps.Boboli
FreschettaThe choice is yours, but knowing how to use both can set you up to do this for any meal, anytime.

We used fresh, home made dough that was made in our bread maker. You can also get fresh pizza dough from the bakery department of almost ANY supermarket. Now it can get a little tricky grilling raw dough, so I flash it real quick in the oven. This will make it much easier to handle on the grill and give it some rigidity. No need to fully cook it; just get it to the stage where it’s easy to handle with tongs and spatula (about 6 minutes at 350) to make the whole process easier.

You can grill the raw dough on the grill, too. Once you roll it out, make sure you lubricate your grill grates and dough liberally. When grilling freshly made dough, don’t worry about shape or uniformity. You’ll need to be on the grill watching this the whole time. It’s tough to even get in a beer break during this time because it’s pretty fast. You’re going to cook one side, flip, and then add your toppings to finish.

That means the most important part of grilling pizzas is having a station ready BEFORE you even put anything on the grill. A side table with your accoutrements is essential. Things get going pretty fast, so you’ll need to have this within a few feet of your grill so you don’t burn the crust.

I also use a pizza pan on the grill and I will tell you why…the more toppings you put on your pizza, the longer it’s going to take to cook. This means you may have a perfect char on your crust and un-melted cheese. I combat this with a pizza pan which I may sneak under halfway through the process.

Another tip I’d like to share is to cook most of your toppings before putting them on. If you’re putting meat on a grilled pizza, it should be cooked, since the fast cooking time won’t allow for raw meat to be cooked before burning the crust. I like to keep fresh and raw veggies on top of the cheese because of their water content.

Here are the pies we made this last interactive pizza party:

BBQ chicken and pork pizza with a red sauce, touch of BBQ sauce topped with shredded mozzarella cheese, crispy smoked bacon and fresh cilantro

Garden fresh heirloom tomato white pizza, with three kinds of basil, peppers and onions topped with buffalo mozzarella

Ricotta cheese with garlic and lemon zest pizza with red sauce and topped with shredded mozzarella and shallots


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About 34BBQ

I am here to share my experiences in the culinary outdoors...and to get people grilling all year 'round! I am "culinary enthusiast" who studied the arts at Culinary and Wine Institute - University of South Carolina. I love food photography and BBQ and I like to cook using my outdoor grills as much as I can. -Jay

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