Although you get a better smoke flavor by using hardwood charcoal in a kettle grill, this recipe also works with a gas grill. The technique is to first grill one side of the pizza over direct heat, flip it over onto a baking sheet and add the toppings and then carefully slide the pizza onto the grill over indirect heat to finish cooking. With a frosty glass of wheat beer served up with a wedge of lemon and a fresh fruit dessert, you can beat the heat in style.
Makes two 12 to 15-inch pizzas or four 8-inch pizzas
Food processor pizza dough:
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup semolina or cornmeal
2 tablespoons instant yeast
1 cup warm water (about 110 degrees F)
3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
toppings of your choice
To make the dough, combine the flour, semolina,and yeast in a food processor. Combine the water, olive oil, honey and salt in a measuring cup and stir to blend. With the machine running, pour the liquid mixture through the feed tube in a steady stream. Process until the dough forms a mass and pulls away from the side of the bowl.
Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and knead by hand until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Place in a large oiled bowl, turn to coat and cover with plastic wrap. (The dough can be refrigerated for up to 3 days at this point. After that, it will taste bitter. Let the dough come to room temperature, then let it rise the final time before continuing.) Let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
Divide the dough in half and press or roll each half into the desired size pizza.
Prepare an indirect fire in a grill (a medium-hot fire on one side and no fire on the other).
To grill using a pizza stone, place the pizza stone on a grill rack over medium-high heat, cover and let preheat for 10 minutes. Sprinkle cornmeal on 2 large baking sheets and place a round of dough on each sheet. Have olive oil for brushing and the toppings ready and bring everything out to the grill. Slide a round of pizza dough onto the preheated stone. Brush with olive oil and arrange the toppings on the dough. Cover and grill until the dough is golden brown and the toppings are hot, 10 to 15 minutes.
To grill directly on the grill grate, sprinkle cornmeal on 2 large baking sheets and place a round of dough on each sheet. Have olive oil and the toppings ready and bring everything out to the grill. Brush one side of the pizza dough with olive oil and place, oiled side down, on the grill grate. Grill for 1 to 2 minutes, until you see the dough start to bubble.
Brush the top side with olive oil and flip the dough, using tongs, back onto the baking sheet. Arrange the toppings on the pizza. Use a grill spatula to place it on the indirect side of the grill. Cover and grill until the toppings are hot, about 5 minutes.
For a tasty alternative to the above traditional pizza dough:
Garlic-Herb Pizza Dough
Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon minced garlic, 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, 1/4 teaspoon dried basil, and 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Cook, stirring, until the garlic softens, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, let cool, and add to the flour along with the honey mixture in the first paragraph above. Makes two 12- to 15-inch pizzas or four 8-inch pizzas.