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Love pizza, but hate to heat up the kitchen on a hot night? Enjoy cooking on the barbecue grill, but getting a little tired of the usual hot dogs-hamburgers-chicken? Pizza baked on the outdoor grill may sound a little unusual, and it may conjure up visions of droopy dough dripping through the grate and incinerating itself on the coals. But never fear; this pizza is both delicious (in a smoky, crackly sort of way) and quite easy to do.
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1 cup lukewarm water (110°F)
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup semolina flour or cornmeal
1/4 cup King Arthur Traditional Whole Wheat Flour
2 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2 large green or red bell peppers (or a combination), cut into 1 x 1-inch squares
2 large sweet onions, cut into 1/2-inch slices
6 plum tomatoes, cut 1/2-inch thick
1/2 pound mild white cheese, such as Monterey Jack or mozzarella, grated (about 2 cups)
Parmesan cheese to taste
pizza seasoning or Italian herbs (optional)
In a large mixing bowl, dissolve the yeast in the water. Stir in the salt, semolina flour (or cornmeal) and whole wheat flour. Add the all-purpose flour until dough forms a ball. Place the dough on a lightly floured work surface and knead until smooth, about 10 minutes. Grease a bowl, place dough in the bowl, turning to coat all sides, cover with plastic wrap, and set in a warm place to rise until doubled in bulk, about 2 hours (or less, if it's hot out).
Punch dough down, and let rise again for about 40 minutes. Punch it down and divide it into four pieces. Set two of the pieces aside; roll the other two pieces into round, oval or rectangular shapes about 1/8-inch thick. As you finish rolling out pieces, set each on a cookie sheet (or piece of aluminum foil) which has been well oiled with olive oil.
Heat your barbecue grill (or let it cool) to medium hot, setting the rack 3 to 4 inches above the fire. Take one of the rolled-out dough pieces and gently drape it onto the grill. After 1 minute, turn it over; it should be stiff enough to turn quite easily (if not, your grill isn't hot enough). Brush the top of the pizza with olive oil, then layer with the vegetables, then the cheese and spices, if desired. Bake an additional 5 minutes or so, or until filling is hot and cheese is melting. Move the pizza around on the grill if one side or the other starts to get too brown on the bottom. Repeat cooking process with the other pizza, then roll out and cook the remaining two pizzas. (The reasons you don't roll out all four pieces at once are, first, it's sometimes hard to find counter space to put them all; and second, you don't want the dough pieces to start rising.) Serves 4 to 8, depending on appetites.
Prepare the vegetable filling the night before you're going to cook the pizzas. Generously oil two large jelly roll pans or cookie pans with olive oil. Lay the vegetables in a single layer in the pans; you may have to crowd them initially, but as they cook they'll shrink. Bake at 400°F for about 1 hour, then turn off the heat and let the vegetables sit in the oven, undisturbed, overnight. The next morning they should be lightly browned, soft and pliable. Vegetables prepared this way have a concentrated taste and sweetness that's terrific. They go just as well on an antipasto platter as on pizza.