Monday, January 12, 2009

Barbecue Chicken-Pineapple Pizza

My mom and I made this really yummy pizza for New Year's Eve--much yummier than our usual ordered-in pizza from East of Chicago or Pizza Hut, which is what we usually do for New Year's Eve! You can use your favorite pizza crust recipe (here are two I like, from Martha Stewart and Peter Reinhart), but you may want to go with a somewhat thicker crust since this has a lot of toppings. You can also use frozen or refrigerated pizza dough from a good grocery store, which is what we did.

We used a somewhat spicy honey barbecue sauce, which was delicious, but anything slightly sweet would work. Just choose something that will go well with the pineapple. You can also omit the tomato sauce and brush the dough with olive oil instead, but I liked the tomato-y base. Be sure to use unseasoned tomato sauce (which usually comes in a can), because you don't want Italian seasonings competing with the barbecue flavors of the pizza.

Barbecue Chicken-Pineapple Pizza
Makes 2 large pizzas

Your favorite pizza dough, enough for two large pizzas
1 cup tomato sauce, without Italian herbs/seasoning
3/4 to 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup of you favorite barbecue sauce, divided
1 tsp coarse ground black pepper
1 fresh pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut into bite-sized cubes
4 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese
6 ounces shredded aged Gouda cheese, un-smoked if you can find it
Thinly sliced red onion, optional

1. Toss the chicken with 1/2 cup barbecue sauce and the black pepper in a large mixing bowl. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
2. When the chicken is marinated, cook over medium heat until cooked through along with the barbecue sauce in the bowl. You can snip it into bite-sized pieces with kitchen shears before cooking it, or shred the chicken with two forks after it has been cooked.
3. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees or to the temperature required by your pizza dough recipe.
4. Stretch your pizza dough out to the desired size (we used two cookie sheets). Cover each crust with a very thin layer of tomato sauce. Add the chicken, pineapple, and red onion. Sprinkle the pizzas with the mozzarella and Gouda cheeses. Drizzle the pizza with the remaining barbecue sauce.
5. Place the pizza in the oven and cook until the crust is nicely browned and the cheese is bubbling. If you tend to find that the tops of your pizzas burn before the crust is done, you can reserve a portion of the cheese and sprinkle it on halfway through baking.

Here's the pizza all ready to go in the oven!

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