Valentine’s Pizza

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Valentine's Pizza

Valentine’s Pizza

Valentine’s Pizza

The family and I decided to spend Valentine’s Day by having a pizza party at home.  In honor of the holiday, we decided to make heart-shaped Valentine’s pizzas.  You might say to yourself, “Why not just call your local pizzeria?”  I will give you three reasons: family bonding, better tasting, and personal satisfaction.  Heart-Shaped PizzaIt may seem a little intimidating to make your own pizza, but as long as you have the right equipment and know a few procedural steps, you will have no problem whatsoever.  You will be crushing the national-chain competition in no time.

Before you begin, you will need to purchase a pizza stone, pizza peel (paddle), and a pizza wheel/cutter.  When looking for your pizza stone, make sure that it has a large enough surface for your purposes.  For a pizza peel, it doesn’t need to be anything special just as long as it has a tapered edge.  The flour that you’ll be spreading on the peel does most of the work.  


One technique that you’ll need to master is pounding and stretching out your dough.  Again, it sounds more difficult than it actually is.  Place your dough ball on a floured pizza pizza peel.  Starting around the edge of the ball, press the dough down with your finger tips.  Make sure to pound down the entire edge before working your way to the inside of the dough.  Once the dough has been flattened, pick the dough up, hold the edge with one hand, and stretch it out with your other hand as a fist.  Once you have stretched it enough, you can continue with both fists.  When your dough has been stretched to your size preference, lay it down on your floured-pizza peel.  You will want to make sure you have enough flour on your peel so that the pizza slides onto the stone, but not too much so that it will stick to your dough and burn on the underside of your Valentine’s pizza.  

When you have your dough on the peel, you will need to move quickly and efficiently.  Make sure you have everything ready and at your fingertips at this point.  You don’t want to be fumbling around and cutting onions or opening jars of sauce while your dough is slowly soaking up the flour you sprinkled on the peel.  


At this point, top the dough with any toppings that you would like: sauce, onions, sausage, garlic, oil, peppers, cheese, broccoli, chicken, etc.  The sky is the limit.  When the toppings are on, give the peel a little shimmy and shake to see if the dough will move freely on the peel.  Put the edge of your peel at the back of your stone and at an incline.  Start to shimmy and shake your peel so the pizza starts to slowly slide onto the stone.  As the pizza slides, slowly pull the peel back toward the front edge of the stone.Heart-Shaped Pizza

For the oven, I place the stone on the oven rack when it is in the lowest position.  I preheat the oven to the highest temperature possible.  Give the oven a bit more time to preheat so the stone will be at the same temperature.

We made a Valentine’s pizza with red sauce, mushrooms, sausage, and grated mozzarella.  For another, we used pesto for the sauce and topped it with ricotta and fresh mozzarella.  We baked them in the oven until they were golden brown. DEEELICIOUS!

Please let us know how your creations tasted!