The Culinary Institute of America

CIA Recipe: Grilled Pizza

Grilled Pizza
 

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Virginia Muré
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Hyde Park, NY – Everyone loves pizza. But who wants to turn on an oven in the height of the summer heat? The chefs at The Culinary Institute of America have a great alternative that beats calling out for delivery: use your outdoor grill to make a fresh and delicious smoky-flavored pie.

Making bread on top of coals is as old as fire and dough. Flatbreads of many types, like Indian-style naan and Mexican tortillas, have been traditionally grilled all over the world.

"The key to making a great grilled pizza is shaping the crust," says CIA Chef Howie Velie. "Start with fresh dough, and roll or stretch it so the center is about 1/4-inch thick. I prefer to keep them small in diameter so they are easier to manage and get off the grill."

Pizza can be made on your gas grill or any outdoor fire. For best results, make your own fresh dough, roll or stretch it to the desired size, and don't worry if it isn't perfectly round. Brush with oil, and place the oiled side directly onto the grill. Once it's down, brush the other side with oil. Flip it over as soon as the dough is marked on the down side and begins to puff up slightly. You are now ready to sauce and top the pie.

Sauté or grill the onions for the pizza before you begin. If you prefer, you can use uncooked onions instead. In that case, use a sweet onion like a Walla Walla or Vidalia. The tomato sauce that you use for the pizza should be fairly thick and not cold.

This method produces a crispy rustic pizza. By using favorite toppings, you can customize each one to everyone's individual taste. Pizza is always a great party food, and this is especially true for outdoor parties when you make the pizzas yourself.

The following recipe—along with more than 175 others—is explained and illustrated in The Culinary Institute of America Grilling cookbook (2006, Lebhar-Friedman), available for purchase at bookstores nationwide or at www.ciaprochef.com/fbi/books/grilling.html.

 

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Photo Caption and Hi-Res Image

CIA's grilled pizza. (Photo credit: CIA/Ben Fink)
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Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America is an independent, not-for-profit college offering associate and bachelor's degrees with majors in culinary arts, baking and pastry arts, and culinary science, as well as certificate programs in culinary arts and wine and beverage studies. As the world's premier culinary college, the CIA provides thought leadership in the areas of health & wellness, sustainability, and world cuisines & cultures through research and conferences. The CIA has a network of 45,000 alumni that includes industry leaders such as Grant Achatz, Anthony Bourdain, Roy Choi, Cat Cora, Dan Coudreaut, Steve Ells, Johnny Iuzzini, Charlie Palmer, and Roy Yamaguchi. The CIA also offers courses for professionals and enthusiasts, as well as consulting services in support of innovation for the foodservice and hospitality industry. The college has campuses in Hyde Park, NY; St. Helena, CA; San Antonio, TX; and Singapore.

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