Katie Lee's Pizza Party
By Katie Lee
My favorite birthday party ever was a pizza party. My mom made dough and put all kinds of toppings out in little bowls. Each kid got a portion of dough, and then we were able to customize our own pies. As an adult, I still love the idea, and it makes for a totally fun, casual dinner party. Just like Mom did, I set out a variety of toppings, and I let my guests get creative. Instead of baking the pizzas in the oven, however, I fire up the grill and put the dough right onto the grates, giving it a blistery, crispy, yet chewy crust. Serve it with a big chopped salad and a refreshing limoncello affogato for dessert. This is a party worth repeating again and again.
Corn and Tomato Pizza
1 ear corn, cut from cob
¼ cup grape tomatoes, sliced in half
Fresh mozzarella slices
3 basil leaves, torn into pieces
1 tbsp. scallions, white ends, very thinly sliced
Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Place pizza dough onto grill. Let cook one minute and fl ip with tongs. Move to a cooler spot on the grill (about medium heat). Brush with oil and top with corn, tomatoes and mozzarella. Close grill and cook until cheese melts and dough is crisp, about 4 minutes. Remove from grill and top with basil and scallions.
This is like one big antipasto. I love the combination of the garlic, salty salami and spicy pepperoncini, cooled by the provolone cheese and paired with the crisp iceberg lettuce. I make the vinaigrette heavy on the vinegar—equal parts vinegar and oil—because the acidity helps balance the strong flavors of the salad.
For the salad:
1 head iceberg lettuce, chopped
1 medium English cucumber, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
1 cup canned garbanzo beans, rinsed
6 oz. salami, chopped (about 1 cup)
6 oz. provolone cheese, chopped (about 1 cup)
1 6-oz. jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
½ red onion, finely minced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
8 whole pepperoncini
For the vinaigrette:
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup red wine vinegar
1 tsp. fresh rosemary, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Mix all salad ingredients together in a large bowl. Combine the vinaigrette ingredients together in a small bowl or small sealable plastic container. Whisk together or shake well. Toss the salad with the vinaigrette and serve immediately.
After a flavorful (i.e. garlicky) meal, this makes for the perfect palate-cleansing dessert. Spoon lemon sorbet into serving glasses, top with a shot of chilled limoncello and serve.
PHOTOGRAPHS BY MIKI DUISTERHOF (SALAD, PIZZA); CATHY YEULET/GETTYIMAGES.COM (LIMONCELLO)