It’s that wonderful time again! It’s time for farmer’s markets and grilling and veggies fresh from the garden. Last week I saw a recipe in Vegetarian Times magazine for Farmer’s Market Pizza that stopped me in my tracks. I wasn’t able to think of eating anything else. But our peppers aren’t ready, apparently no one else’s are either. We have no tomatoes. WE didn’t grow broccoli or cauliflower…So I decided to make one of my own concoctions with young zucchini from the market, pepper from the store, red onion from the market, mushrooms from the store…ya know…what we have here. We also use a charcoal grill, so use your judgment for your own grill. Gas grills may cook differently. Cook your pizza on medium to low heat if possible.
I made my own pizza crust first:
Makes 2 thick crusts or 3 thin crusts
4 to 4 1/4 cups bread flour, plus extra for counter (reserve ¼ cup for additional if needed)
1 packet (2.25 tsp) instant or rapid-rise yeast
1 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 cups warm water (about 110 degrees)
NOTE: Using a higher gluten flour will make your crust bubbly and light with a slight “chewy” texture. All-purpose flour will work just fine, it will just be more flat and dense.
With a kitchen aid mixer or with a food processor, whisk or pulse 4 cups of flour, yeast, and salt together until combined. Add oil. Then add the warm water while mixing with a dough hook on the kitchen aide or dough blade in the processor. Mix for about 30 seconds or until dough forms. Leave dough rest for about 2 minutes. Mix dough again with the dough hook for about 30 more seconds. If the dough is sticky, add the additional ¼ cup 1 tbsp at a time until it’s no longer sticky.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and work into a smooth ball. Lightly oil a large bowl with additional olive oil, put dough ball inside and cover with plastic wrap or a towel and place in a warm place until the dough doubles in size. (About an hour)
While the dough is rising, make your sauce and prepare your sauce and veggies.
1 can of diced tomatoes (or two if you want to cover two pizzas)
2-3 Tbsp fresh oregano (if you’re using dried, half that amount)
2-3 cloves of garlic – minced (depending on your tolerance – more if you suspect you have a vampire problem)
1 tbsp olive oil (don’t ask me why I add this, all the recipes I read say to add it, and so I do.)
1 tsp red chili flakes (optional)
A guzzle of red wine. If you don’t have red wine, add a couple of Tbsp of Balsamic Vinegar.
Stir and reduce until little liquid remains. You can puree the sauce if you wish, or you can use it chunky (like we did). It really doesn’t matter, just remember you’re grilling this, so you don’t want the sauce to soften the dough so much that it makes the dough soggy.
This is ALL relative. This is just what I did, but you can add any kind of veggies you want. You will be roasting them on the grill, so make sure they’re not gooey, like avocado. You can use avocado, just don’t grill them.
1-2 Tbsp olive oil
1 small to med red onion
1 small zuchinni
1 red pepper
1 yellow or orange pepper
Button or baby bella mushrooms (I used 4 or 5 and sliced them up, but you can do whatever you want)
Slice vegetables or chunk (if you’re using cauliflower or broccoli) to about ¼ inch slices. Toss in olive oil and place on a veggie basket on the grill. I, personally, like my veggies a little big charred on the edges. But you do what you like. It’s your pizza. I tossed a handful of shredded cheese on top. Remember, this pizza isn’t about the cheese, it’s about the veggies, so don’t go overboard. Plus, you don’t want it super heavy either or it might fall through the grates.
Divide your ball of dough into two to three smaller balls. (smaller balls make thinner crusts or more pizzas) Roll out to about ¼ inch thick. Place the rolled out pizza dough on a floured pizza board if you have one. If not, use a cookie sheet that the dough can slide off of easily.
Then simply assemble the pizza like you would any other pizza. Do not cook your pizza crust ahead of time, it will cook on the grill.
Oil your grill grates with cooking oil, like canola oil or vegetable oil and a paper towel. GENTLY slide the pizza onto the grill. Cover and cook for 5-10 minutes. If the crust is bubbly, it’s ready to go. Gently remove the pizza with a grill spatula back onto the pizza board or whatever you used to put the pizza on the grill in the first place.
Oh yeah, and ENJOY!
*NOTE: This pizza was not a winner with the kids. They both looked at me like I was absolutely stark raving mad for even suggesting that they eat THAT for supper. But the dough can easily enough be made for a cheese pizza…?”