Big Green Eggs and Pizza

It was a warm Friday evening and we decided on pizza. Neither of us really wanted to venture out after the week we both endured. I had some leftover pizza dough from cooking class. So I fired up my Big Green Egg charcoal grill and set it up to bake pizzas.

If we’ve been acquainted for long, you already know that I am not much of a blogger. I don’t mind writing, I just hate to stop and take pictures while I’m cooking. It seems unnatural. But given my new state of (un)employment, I am starting over and ramping-up my self-promotion. The misses agreed to be my photographer.

Cut the dough

We start off by cutting the dough into the desired size. If you are using a fresh batch from my Pizza Dough recipe, cut it into 4 equal pieces. Roll the dough into a ball and then form it into a disk. Dust the dough lightly with flour as needed so it doesn’t stick to your hands or counter.

Form into disks

Pick up the disk and start pinching the dough very thin at the edges all the way around the entire perimeter. The edges are always the hardest part to get thin, so this techniques helps.

pinch the perimeter

Now you can lay it on the bench and roll it out. I roll both directions to keep the shape generally round. Dust the dough lightly with flour as needed.

Roll it out

As you work with the dough the gluten will stiffen, making it very elastic and difficult to roll thin and large. It will very annoyingly tend to shrink back in size. Let the dough rest for 5 minutes covered in a damp towel or plastic wrap. This allows the gluten to relax and lessens the elasticity of the dough, making it easier to roll out.

On the parchment

Place your dough on a sheet of baking parchment and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and an even sprinkle of kosher salt.

trim parchment

Now get creative. I topped this one with roasted tomatoes, Italian sausage, mini-pepperoni, Italian five-cheese blend and fresh mozzarella. Notice how the shredded cheese falls off the crust’s edge. This is aesthetically very important. Then trim the excess parchment to keep it from burning in the grill.

on the grill

Place the pizza on the baking stone. The grill has been running for about 45 minutes now with the lid closed. I set it up with an air gap between the baking stone and the flame deflector. The fire is burning very clean with no visible smoke from the top vent. The temperature is about 550° F.

off the grill

In about 8 minutes, the top is bubbling and the meticulously arranged cheese around the edges is browning. Beautiful!

with salad

Served with my famous Caesar salad.

tomato mozzarella

The second pizza was a Margherita Pizza with roasted tomatoes and fresh mozzarella. The grill’s high heat would burn any basil.

with basil pesto

So we finish it off with some fresh basil pesto after it come off the grill.

Tell me about your grilled pizza experience or contact me if you have any questions.

 

 

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Alumnus - The Culinary Institute of America

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