Easy homemade pizza?
Sometimes when I come home after a really busy day, I crave a decent pizza. I generally have most of the ingredients in the pantry, except for the crust. Without going through the trouble of making pizza dough from scratch, is there a reasonable store bought alternative? I have seen Bobili crusts in the market, but have never tried one, and I think I have seen premade pizza dough in either (or perhaps both) the refrigerated or freezer sections of some supermarkets. Are any of these althernatives decent, or should I just phone for delivery pizza which I my area is not great?
When I want a quick pizza fix, I use the Kronos pocketless pita breads, just the right size and they hold up well to the sauce and cheese. I buy a big bag at Costco's and freeze them. I always keep sauce and cheese on hand and in the summer I use them with fresh basil and tomatos.
I like the refrigerated dough from Trader Joe's or Stop and Shop. The one from Stop and Shop comes frozen, but the store near me puts a few balls of it in the fridge section (where the cakes are) so they are pretty much risen by the time I get home. ($1 for TJ's and $2 for S&S)
I've also asked my favorite pizza place to sell me dough, and they gladly agreed. They charged more- about $3 a ball. When I bought the dough, they also offered their sauce and grated cheese.
Also, sometimes I get cheap and on a Sunday I make a few recipes of dough and freeze the balls in Ziplock bags. It's even cheaper than $1 from TJ's.
If you think in advance like I do, take out a ball of frozen dough in the morning and leave it in an oiled bowl covered with a towel. Sometimes I know I want pizza before I leave to work, but I'm not sure what I want on top. Thinking about the rising dough all day gives me a reason to come up with new toppings...
If by extreme coincidence you live in the Boston area, Iggy's Breads makes an excellent very thin crust oblong pizza shell sold in Whole Foods. If you're not in the Boston area you can call them and they claim you can order over the phone at 617-491-7600
i just used one tonight for the first time for a puttanesca pizza I made and it was excellent. They also have a web site but it doesn't show this pizza shell yet... see: http://www.iggysbread.com/main.html
I see that the other chows disagree, but I LIKE Boboli thin crust for a quick meal. Can't get them where I am now, but would if available. If the delivered pizza in your area "is not great" then the dough they sell you (if they would do so) may not be great either. When in California, I used to make a quick pizza sauce with canned tomatoes in sauce, garlic, oregano, etc and top with whatever I had that appealed to me. Often this included grilled eggplant (done the day before when I was grilling something else), Italian sausage and mushrooms. I guess I am not a real Chowhound! ( Sobbing quietly, as I write.) Dee
i live in australia and we have some delicious wholemeal pita breads that are delicious topped with a bit of tomato paste cheese and vegetables in the oven but have you thought about nann bread topped with tomato cheese etc it is a delicious alternitive but not really authentic but delicious nonetheless.
re: umbushi plum
I know you say you don't want to make crust, but you might possibly reconsider if you had a super easy & quick recipe....just in case:
This recipe is from Vogue magazine, of all place (Feb 2005 issue.) It is super fast. Start it the moment you walk in the door, then while it's rising for 45 min you can do other things. Once it goes in the oven it's done in 10 minutes.
I could even eat this crust as flatbread, it's so delicious. I don't always make this with bufala mozzarella. I'll sometimes grate regular mozzarella (low-moisture part skim - the kind sold by Precious or Frigo in a ball) instead. You can experiment with sauceless (just cheese) or cheeseless - just sauce & toppings. No homemade pizza will turn out well unless you use a pizza stone. Also this recipe calls for 450 deg but I set my gas oven to 500 (as high as it'll go) and set the pizza stone on the floor of it.
1/4 c white wine
3/4 c warm water
1 pkt active dry yeast
1 T honey
1 tsp kosher salt
1 T extra-virgin olive oil
3 c all purpose flour
1 1/2 c tomato sauce
10 oz bufala mozzarella
To taste: sea salt, extra-virgin olive oil, fresh basil leaves
1. Combine wine, water, and yeast in large bowl. Stir until dissolved. Add honey, salt, and olive oil. Mix thoroughly. Add 1 c flour and make a wet paste. Add remaining flour.
2. Knead dough on a lightly floured board for 2-3 mins.
3. Place dough in lightly oiled bowl and cover with towel. Let rise 45 min.
4. Form dough into 4 1/4" thick discs, 11" in diameter. Layer tomato sauce and mozzarella.
5. Bake at 450 on a pizza stone for 10-15 min, until dough is lightly browned.
6. Sprinkle with sea salt, olive oil, and basil to taste.
Personally, I think Bobili is disgusting and if you're going to try something like Pilsbury Pizza dough.... don't! I would suggest finding an Italian Deli/Grocery that sells their dough. Don't know where you live, but you can also by the premade dough at Trader Joes or Fresh and Easy.
I don't know where you live, but Publix supermarkets sell pizza dough in their bakery department...fresh & refrigerated, not frozen. ALSO, there are some pizzerias that will sell you their fresh pizza dough..you just need to call them and ask if they sell fresh pizza dough to the public.
I haven't done it but have been told Bertucci's will sell their dough. And, as dolores said, some local places do it, too, just ask. You can buy dough from Trader Joe's, white, whole wheat, basil something. I have done it in a long time but it was just okay. I'd pass on the Boboli if you're looking for pizza.
>>in either (or perhaps both) the refrigerated or freezer sections of some supermarkets.
I've gotten both, and they were fine. An Italian deli had the dough frozen and a supermarket had them refrigerated. Posters have said that pizza places will sell their dough, although I've been too chicken to try.
I get two for a large cookie sheet sized Sicilian or my large round pizza pan. You don't want to be in a position where you have to stretch to fit. Oh, and don't forget the olive oil.
Years ago, someone told me about the neighborhood pizza joint selling dough, and now it's my standby for whenever I'm too busy to make my own. I've lived in 6 different cities and small towns since then, and I've only come across 2 places that wouldn't sell their dough, but not a single spot advertised that they did, so you definitely need to ask. My favorite place, in Carrboro, NC, not only sold their dough, but stretched it and put it on a disposable "pizza stone" for you, which worked surprisingly well in my own very hot oven. You can't beat that for $3!