It’s summer, and we can’t seem to get enough food from the grill.
That’s why it was fun to go to Marcia Larsen’s pizza party recently, where all of the guests got to create their own personal pie and grill it just the way they wanted it.
Larsen, who used to own and operate the Alamo Street Theater, made sure everyone made their own. She offered a few instructions, but it was up to you to do the rest.
First, you had to roll out the dough as thick or as thin as you wanted and placed it on a tray sprinkled with a little corn meal. Then you took it outside to the grill where you watched it until the bottom was ready. (A thin crust pizza cooks very fast, as I found out when I burned my first attempt.) When the bottom half of the dough was ready, you flipped it back onto your tray, grill marks up.
At that point, you got to top the crust with your choice from the vast array of goodies that our hostess had set out. First came tomato sauce or olive oil for a base. There were several types of meat — ham, pepperoni and Italian sausage — as well as plenty of veggies, including red onions, diced raw onions, caramelized onions, diced tomatoes, sautéed green peppers, green and black olives, pickled jalapeños, mushrooms and spinach. (You could have had most of those in a salad, if you didn’t want the crust.) Of course, there was cheese to go on top, shredded mozzarella as well as Parmesan.
After a few more minutes on the grill, the pizza ready to enjoy.
Larsen buys her dough from the pizza shop at Sam’s Club. “I paid $16 for a case of 30,” she said. “You can buy less, but you can never have enough.”
We ate and ate, but there were plenty of toppings left over. That was no problem for Larsen: “I had three dough balls defrosted and made 30 pepperoni calzones, baked them and tucked them into the freezer for emergency meals.”