Pizza is one of those reflex foods. Here me out. It’s one of those foods you just automatically reach for another slice when you look at that cardboard box, you automatically walk into a pizza shop at 2 a.m. after bars, and on Sunday nights (unless you’re eating Chinese food), you automatically order a pie for delivery. I know you do, because I see the pizza boxes overflowing in the trash, and I see the pizza delivery men at every apartment complex I’ve ever lived in bulldozing through the halls.
Anyway, making your own pizza is NOT something you’d automatically think to do, but I’m here to tell you how you can make a whole night of it and actually ENJOY your very own homemade ‘ZA. First step is the dough, duh. Most restaurants (not slice stands) will let you purchase their homemade dough. If not, you can find regular or whole wheat dough at Trader Joe’s or most grocery stores. Then, you pick your toppings. The best part is your options are endless, and no one can judge you if you want to put that broccoli or sweet potatoes on there.
Get REAL cheese. Don’t skimp yourself buying fake cheese that is already shredded in ziplock bags. Get burrata or mozzarella balls and cut into disks, parmesan cheese blocks that you can shred yourself on a grader, and I recommend RAO’s tomato sauce for the base. Try tomato basil or spicy. Put all of your ingredients into small mise en place bowls, so you can create an accessible working station and then everyone can choose their own toppings.
Besides the cheese and sauce, I’d recommend: salami, prosciutto, mini meatballs, jalapeños, tomatoes, mushrooms, sautéed peppers and onions, grilled chicken, pesto, and butternut squash if you want a sweet one. Once you’ve topped your dough with sauce, cheese, meats, veggies, it’s time to go in that oven! Place your baking sheet with pie into a 400 degree preheated oven and bake until the edges are crispy about 15-20 minutes or so. Every oven is different, so just keep a watch on it. Also, you can bake the dough for a little bit BEFORE you add the toppings, and then cook it for less time after as well. After all, it’s YOUR PARTY.
Most importantly, don’t forget to stock plenty of wine for your guests to sip on while prepping, shredding, and baking. It makes all the difference 🙂 See you don’t need a pizza stone to make crunchy good pizza!