I love summer for a lot of reasons.
An abundant garden. A lush, green yard. Being out on the lake, putzing around in my kayak. Warm evenings on the back porch under the lights or around the fire. Beach time. Roadtrips. Camping trips. Longer days. Sunkissed skin. More energy. People smiling, people playing.
But more than almost anything, I love cooking outdoors. There’s something about the fresh air and the smell of a grill and the way that the sun hits your ingredients. It’s a magical feeling — liberating and primal. Needless to say, we eat outside a LOT during the warm months. A typical weeknight meal for us (pending sun) is a borderline ridiculously large assortment of grilled vegetables, maybe some kind of protein if we’re in the mood, and a huge salad (hopefully harvested straight out of the yard). But on some nights, we let our hair down and indulge a little. Last night was one of those nights.
I LOVE me some good pizza (Bar Del Corso, you have my heart). And I especially love it when it has been woodfired…those perfectly charred edges — still a bit chewy, but with a wonderfully crunchy exterior. FEED ME!!!!
Unfortunately I was not blessed with pizza oven in my backyard (although, this is probably a very, very good thing). HOWEVER, it’s a brilliant truth that a pizza tossed onto the grill is a close second in flavor and texture (and thank all the heavens that I have one of those!).
I’m sure you can see where I’m going with this…
In true Sandra Lee/weeknight fashion, we took the easy route and used some (fabulous) naan from PCC as our crust. More of a flatbread, really, but I was short on time and energy and dough is most definitely not something I’m a pro at whipping up. These made the perfect little personal portions for each of us (we all have slightly different tastes, so I topped each with a little different combination of goodies).
- Garlic + herb Olive oil (in a small pan, I sizzled up some olive oil, garlic, rosemary, thyme, basil, red pepper flakes — this was used as a base on our flatbreads and went down first)
- and the most critical topping of all: MAMA LIL’S GOATHORN PEPPERS
I simply layered everything up and tossed them on a medium-high grill. Once everything was melted I yanked them off, chopped them up, and served. About 7 minutes on the grill was perfect. The result was gooey goodness that was full of flavor and texture and goodness those peppers will make your head spin.