Turn Your Grill Into A Pizza Maker

Some say an outdoor kitchen isn’t complete without a pizza oven. A delicious pie straight out of a blazing hot oven can be delectable when dining al fresco, but pizza also can be made right on the grill.
This recipe for “The Chicagoan” from Craig W. Priebe’s “Grilled Pizzas & Piadinas” (DK) utilizes grilled beef and sliced potatoes to give this grilled pizza a steakhouse flavor. Use a homemade dough or your favorite premade variety available at your local grocery store.

The Chicagoan
Makes a 12-inch pizza

1 russet potato, peeled and sliced about 1⁄4-inch thick
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1⁄2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 ounces top sirloin or strip steak
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 grilled pizza crust
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1⁄2 cup shredded cheddar
1 cup chunky tomato sauce
1⁄2 cup thinly sliced red onions
1⁄4 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons minced fresh chives

1. Preheat the oven to 400 F. Place the sliced potato in a large bowl and toss with two tablespoons olive oil, salt and pepper. Line a baking sheet with foil and spread the slices in a single layer. Bake for about 15 minutes, until the potato is golden and tender. While still hot, loosen the slices with a spatula so they don’t stick.
2. Prepare a grill for direct cooking over high heat. Season the steak liberally on both sides with the salt and pepper. Grill the steak over the hottest part of the fire for 4 minutes. Turn and grill for 4 minutes longer, until the steak is medium-rare and well charred. Remove and let sit for 5 minutes. Slice thinly.
3. Brush the grilled side of the pizza crust with the remaining one tablespoon olive oil and dust with the Parmesan. Sprinkle the mozzarella and cheddar on top. Drop spoonfuls of the chunky tomato sauce onto the pizza. Top with the potato, red onion and the steak.
4. Grill the pizza with indirect heat. If your grill is still hot, move coals to one side or turn off one burner and allow the pizza to cook on the side without a direct flame. Grill the pizza for 5 to 8 minutes, or until the crust is crisp and brown. The bottom may have a few black spots from charring. Optional: Broil the cooked pizza in the oven for 1 to 2 minutes more to caramelize the top.
5. Before serving, drop teaspoons of the sour cream onto the pizza, and garnish with the fresh chives.

Grilling The Crust

To grill a pizza crust for this recipe, roll out to a 12-inch circle and place on a cookie sheet. Adjust the grill to reach a temperature of 400 F.
Slide the dough onto the grill. The dough should take about 3 minutes to cook. Watch for bubbles. The crust will be soft at first and tear easily. To check doneness, lift the underside. It should be an even light brown with brown grill marks.
Pick up the crust using tongs and place it on your cookie sheet. Flip it over so the grilled side is face up. This browned side becomes the top of your pizza.

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