When M and I first got together, I was right out of college and I had about 0 cooking experience. However, I had just started this blog (for baking, not for cooking) and I was feeling more adventurous in the kitchen. And so, I’d invite M over for dinner. I distinctly remember the first time I made homemade pizza. I had to pull the smoke detector from the wall of my apartment, the crust was horrible, and M was ever so gracious (I attribute this to his not ever eating a home-cooked meal, so anything was better than nothing.) However, I knew the pizza was crap and from that moment on, pizza has been one great experiment with many trial and errors.
Fast forward to today and I’m still playing around with my pizza. I have two pizza stones and now this steel pan (which is why I’m sharing this recipe with you). Turns out, I have a new favorite way to make pizza that creates an excellent crisp crust on the bottom and a gooey cheesy top (without setting the smoke detectors off). I use this 11″ season steel pan first on the stove top then transfer it into the oven. Sure it’s not how one might normally make pizza at home, but it gets the job done (and creates these wonderful personal sized pizzas!) Add to it a bright and light topping of Meyer lemons and brussels sprouts, it’s a winning dinner.
Lodge Cast Iron was nice enough to let me giveaway one of these pans as well as one of their 10″ seasoned steel skillets (cooking surface is 8″). Details to enter are below!
- Pizza Dough
- 3/4 cup warm water
- 2 1/4 teaspoon dry yeast (1 package)
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 cup white whole wheat flour (see note)
- 3/4 cup to 1 cup unbleached all purpose flour
- 1/4 pound Brussels Sprouts
- 1 small shallot
- 1 Meyer lemon
- Olive Oil, for brushing
- 6 to 8 ounces smoked mozzarella cheese, shredded
- Cornmeal, for rolling
- In a bowl of a stand mixer, combine the water, yeast, and honey- stir with a wooden spoon until yeast is dissolved. Let sit until yeast begins to activate, 5-10 minutes. Once yeast is ready, add in oil, salt, and 1 cup of the whole wheat flour. Turn your mixer on low with the dough hook on and let mix, scrapping down the sides as needed. From here on out, add 2-4 tablespoons of the all purpose flour at a time, letting the dough mix for a bit until adding more flour. When the dough starts to come together, continue to let the mixer run for 1-2 minutes and adding more flour until your dough has just pulled away from the sides of the mixer. Remove from the mixer and place in a warm spot. Brush with oil and let rise for 1 hour.
- In a food processor fitted with a slicer attachment (or using a mandoline or sharp knife), shred the brussels sprouts and shallots, set aside. Thinly slice the meyer lemon into circles, then each circle into a half moon, removing seeds as needed.
- Preheat the broiler and place a rack in the upper third of your oven (but not the highest rack).
- Divide the dough into 4 balls and working with one ball at a time, roll out the dough into roughly an 10″ circle.
- Preheat a cast iron or seasoned steel skillet over medium heat on the stove top. Transfer the dough to the skillet and brush the top with olive oil. Sprinkle with the Brussels Sprouts/shallots, then a few meyer lemon pieces, and finish with 1 to 2 ounces of the smoked mozzarella cheese.
- Check the bottom of the pizza by lifting up slightly (it should be lightly brown and crispy). Carefully transfer the pan to under the broiler and cook until the cheese is melting and the top of the crust is browning, 45 seconds to 2 minutes (watch closely!)
- Repeat with remaining pizza dough.
* I like the lightness the all purpose adds to the pizza dough, but you can easily use all whole wheat flour (I still really like the white whole wheat for pizza dough!)
* If wanting to cook pizza the traditional way (using a stone), see this recipe
*I usually only make 2 pizzas and freeze the remaining dough for another pizza night.
* For those nights I forgot to make dough, I love Trader Joe’s or Whole Food’s fresh whole wheat pizza dough!