Friday the 13th is a special day in our lives. It's the day we got engaged (7/13/07)! Now, we always celebrate when it comes along. One of our favorite celebration meals is grilled pizzas. Since we discovered them, W asks for them just about every year on his birthday. We have them way more often than that, although not as often as either of us would like!
It seemed fitting to share them today, since it's Friday the 13th. We won't be having them for dinner because W has to work, but I'm hoping to make them again soon!
I've shared pizza ideas with you before here & here, as well as our go-to crust, but recently I discovered a new crust. An Easy Beer Crust, to be exact. I've started making a combination of that & our go-to crust that uses whole grain flour. It's perfect on the grill!
When we do pizza, I like to top it with as many veggies as possible. On the long tray above, from top to bottom, we had red bell pepper, roasted Brussels sprouts, mushroom slices, onions, grilled ramps, & chopped ramp greens. Not shown was grilled eggplant. For sauces, we used homemade pesto, homemade tomato sauce, & Trader Joe's BBQ sauce. Cheeses included vegan parmesan, raw milk cheddar (we have a local farm that makes it & it's awesome!), & a syrah soaked romano. I like to grate our own cheese because then we don't go overboard with it & because freshly grated cheese doesn't have additives like the bagged variety from the stores.
About the controlling of the cheese...you can tell W grated it this time. He made the 2 on the cookie sheet that have a blizzard of cheese on them. :-)
The hardest part of grilled pizzas is getting the dough thin enough while still being able to pick it up to transfer it to the grill. Once it's on there, the rest is easy!
Grilled Beer Crust Pizzas
Serves 4 generously
Crust adapted from BevCooks & this crust
1 packet active yeast
1/4 c lukewarm water
1 tsp sugar (I use coconut sugar)
3-4 c spelt flour (or use white whole wheat flour)
1/2 tsp salt
1 c beer (I usually use Yuengling Lager, but most kinds will do!)
greens (spinach, kale, chard, etc.)
vegan parmesan cheese
freshly shredded cheese (cheddar, mozzarella, asiago, provolone, etc.)
In a small bowl or measuring cup, combine the water, sugar, and yeast. Allow to sit for 15 minutes, or until you see the yeast start to bubble.
Meanwhile, combine 3 cups of flour & the salt together in a large bowl. Once yeast mixture is bubbly, add it to the flour. Stir, then slowly pour in the beer. Mix until a dough comes together, adding more flour if it looks too runny. Dough should form a ball. Turn dough out onto a floured counter top & knead until smooth. If dough is still super wet, add more flour as needed. Lightly coat the empty bowl with cooking spray, then return the dough to the bowl, cover with a towel, and allow to rise in a warm, draft free spot. (I usually use our oven, keeping it turned off.) Let dough rise for 1 hour, then divide it into 4 balls. Cover and allow dough to rest for 30-40 minutes longer.
Preheat the grill to 425 (high). Here's the tricky part! Spray two large cookie sheets (make sure whatever you use doesn't have edges!) with cooking spray. Spread two balls per sheet into pizza crusts. Make sure you don't spread the dough too thin or you will not be able to move them from the sheets to the grill. Gently pick up/slide the dough from the cookie sheets onto the grill. Don't worry if it doesn't come off perfectly - you can gently pull any holes together once it's on the grill (just don't touch the grates). Close the lid & let bake for 10 minutes. Check frequently after that - you're aiming for a crisp bottom but not burnt. The top will look slightly underdone, but no longer be shiny.
Remove crusts from the grill, flipping them so that you are topping the side that was already grilled. Add desired sauces, toppings, & cheese. (See the third picture above.) Return the pizzas to the grill for another 10 minutes, checking frequently after that to ensure the cheese is melted but the bottom doesn't burn. Remove from the grill & enjoy!