Pizza is a family favorite at the Pearls + Girls household on Friday nights. The girls prefer a simple, crispy pizza smothered in mozzarella and parmesan, while Mr. Pearls + Girls and myself prefer something a bit more exotic.
Ok, cheese pizza is not REALLY exotic, but when the wind chill is below zero, I’m not inclined to head out to the grocery store to shop for ingredients. I’m using what we’ve got, folks, which is some odds and ends of leftover cheese. IF you want to make it really special, top your pizza with a sliced egg and sprinkle it with sea salt and pepper. Ooh la la, doesn’t that look decadent? Pair it with a salad and a glass of wine (or milk for the kiddos), and you’ve got a delicious dinner worthy of any pizza and movie night!
When the moon hit’s your eye like a big pizza pie,
~ Dean Martin
This recipe for homemade pizza dough makes just enough for 6 individual sized pizzas or two medium pizzas. For our family of four, we made four individual pizzas and two dessert pizzas. Here’s a list of my top picks for pizza toppings! Enjoy! 🙂
– garlic oil or butter, shredded mozzarella, crumbled goat cheese, crumbled blue cheese, parmesan cheese
– garlic oil or butter, sliced ham or proscuitto, sliced mushrooms, gruyere cheese
– barbeque sauce, diced rotisserie chicken, sauteed onions, monterey jack cheese
– red sauce, sopressata salami or pepperoni, sliced banana peppers, pepper jack cheese
– pesto sauce, roasted shrimp, roasted asparagus, crumbled goat cheese and parmesan cheese
– butter, cinnamon/sugar, hot fudge sauce (store bought or homemade), chopped pistachios or walnuts
– butter, cinnamon/sugar, caramel sauce (store bought or homemade), sauteed apples
– butter, mini marshmallows, chocolate chips (semi-sweet or dark), graham cracker crumbs
– (let pizza crust cool completely first) butter, whipped cream, assorted berries, dusting of powdered sugar
Homemade Pizza Dough
Yield: 6 individual pizzas or 2 medium pizzas
1 TBSP melted butter or olive oil + a drizzle for dough ball
1 2.25 oz. pkg. yeast ( or 2 1/2 tsp yeast, if you buy your yeast in a jar and keep it in the fridge, like me)
1 tsp honey or sugar
1 cup warm water
2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp salt
Cornmeal, for dusting
In a small bowl, combine water and honey or sugar. Whisk to combine. Sprinkle yeast on top, allow to sit for 10 minutes. Yeast should look frothy. Using a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment, add flour, butter or oil and yeast mixture. Mix on medium speed. Once the dough starts to come together, sprinkle with 1 tsp salt. Continue mixing on medium speed until the dough pulls away from the sides and wraps around the dough hook. Lower the speed to medium-low, and allow to knead for three minutes. Form dough into a ball, then place back in mixing bowl, drizzle with olive oil or butter and rub over top of dough ball. This will keep the dough from forming a crust while rising. Rising Tip: Preheat oven to 300 degrees for ONE MINUTE, then turn off. It’s important to only heat for a minute, if the oven is too hot it could kill your yeast. Cover your bowl with a damp towel and place in the oven to rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
Remove dough from oven, punch down, and form into 6 balls. Place on a baking sheet and put back in the oven to rise for another 30 minutes to an hour. Preheat your oven to 500 degrees and sprinkle a baking stone or baking sheet with cornmeal. Flour a board, and roll out each ball of dough about 1/4 inch thick. For a savory pizza, spread your sauce or butter/olive oil, top with desired toppings and bake for 9 – 11 minutes. For a sweet pizza, spread with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and bake for 9 – 11 minutes. Add toppings once pizza has cooled for a few minutes. Slice and enjoy!