Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Making Pizza at Home

chicken and pineapple pizza

We LOVE pizza in our house. LOVE. Especially from this one place a few towns over, it’s so good that we find excuses to go at least twice a month even though it’s almost half an hour away. At one point we would easily go through one or two large pies a week. Not cheap, that’s for sure. And probably not that healthy with all of that cheese… but we’ll ignore that point.

To try and cut costs we cut down on our pizza consumption. I thought hubby wasn’t going to make it, the withdrawal was pretty bad. I knew there had to be a way to make a decent pizza at home. I’d tried making pizza at home several times before, but it’s not the same. The crust always sucks – if I make it myself it doesn’t taste right or rises too much or something else is wrong. If I buy one of those DIY kits, the dough tastes like toast (I love me some toast, just not as pizza).

Then, I got probably the third best cooking tip ever: buy dough from the pizzeria.

Really? You can do that? Why yes, you can! For a couple of dollars you can buy raw pizza dough (a large dough at our favorite place is $2.50) and do the rest at home! Pizza dough freezes really well too, just let it come up to room temperature before stretching.

ready for baking

Cost Breakdown: (for a large cheese pizza)
Dough: $2.50
Sauce: $.50 plus a few cents for spices
Cheese: $1-3 depending on where you buy it, and if you get it in bulk
Total: Between $4 and $6 – waaay better than $16! (Yeah, pizza is expensive here)

Our favorite pizza is chicken and pineapple – shared below!

Chicken and Pineapple Pizza

1 large or medium dough (if you like thinner crust, use a medium dough and stretch it to the large size)
1 8oz can tomato sauce
¼ tsp dried basil
¼ tsp dried minced garlic
Pinch dried oregano
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
½ cup drained diced pineapple
1-2 chicken tenders, cooked and cut into ½ inch pieces

Preheat the oven to 425 deg F. Dust your pan or stone with cornmeal (I recommend using a pizza stone if you can afford one, they’re worth it). Stretch your dough on the pan, pressing the edges down 1” from the edge to create a crust bump, and to make the dough stick to the pan a little bit which keeps it from shrinking. In a small bowl mix the tomato sauce, basil, garlic and oregano. Spread the sauce on the dough up to 1” from the edge. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the sauce. Blot the pineapple with a towel, and sprinkle on top of the cheese. Top with the chicken. Cook for 15-20 minutes until the crust is lightly browned and the cheese is melted.
blot that pineapple!

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