We had the privilege of having some of our German exchange students over for Pizza 101!  They had a great time and loved the pizza!

I decided to make my our pizza sauce when I lucked out with these tomatoes!

1 pound of tomatoes for $1 😀

I sliced them in quarters and generously sprinkled them with salt and pepper while 1 tablespoon of minced garlic was being sauteed in my stock pot with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

Every batch I make is different because it depends on how the tomatoes are – some are really sweet, some are really tart – these were somewhere in the middle!

Biz’s Pizza Sauce

  • 1 pound fresh tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 to 10 basil leaves
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

Cook tomatoes until soft, about 20 minutes.  Puree with stick blender and simmer for up to two hours to reduce.

I had to make the dough ahead of time, because it needs to rise for at least 30 minutes.

Biz’s Deep Dish Pizza Dough

  • 3 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1.5 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons yeast
  • 1 1/4 cup warm water (room temperature is fine)
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon oil (for the bowl when rising)

Put the flour, cornmeal, salt, sugar and yeast in your stand mixer with dough hook.  Add the water and butter and let the machine knead it for about 5 minutes.  Add to a bowl with olive oil and let rest for 30 minutes.

mix dry ingredients first

Then I add the melted butter to the water and mix that together – 5 minutes in the mixer and you are done!

I set the dough in the corner of my kitchen to rest.  I made WAY too much dough!  I don’t know what I was thinking, because each dough recipe is enough for two 16 inch pizzas!

Then I had my ingredients on the other side:

And I got giant pepperoni from my deli – so good!

I also bought new rolling pins and pizza pans:

Maxi and Eyke were ready to roll the dough:

Larissa had some awesome knife skills!  She sliced up the mushrooms and onions. (Yes, I know, I let an onion into the house!)

Larissa made a mushroom, pepperoni and onion pizza:

putting on the homemade sauce

ready for the oven!
Hannah and Eyke rolling out their dough
this one ended up being mostly mushroom with a little bit of pepperoni and light on the cheese

Eyke also made a tiny pizza with some of the dough – his “mini pizza!”E

Since I baked both of these at the same time – I baked them at 425 for 30 minutes, then 5 minutes off the pan straight on my oven rack to crisp up the crust – they loved it!

I love how charred the pepperoni gets 😀

While the kids ate, I made a pizza for me and Tony – sausage, pepperoni, green olives, black olives and fresh basil on my side – I ate 2 pieces, or 1/4 of this pizza:

I may have added this to my slices – if anyone likes crushed red pepper flakes, you’ll love this!  When you open up the jar it smells exactly like jalapenos!  Tony found this at TJ Maxx and gave it to me for my birthday last week 😀

my plate! 😀

For dessert I bought an assortment of butter cookies from our ethnic grocery store.  Um, pretty sure the turtle ones were a big hit!  I only had two cookies left this morning from a pound!

And as a thank you, we gave our German exchange students travel coffee mugs that have the Chicago skyline on it and winter caps with Chicago on it.

Nici and Eyke

Thanks to FoodBuzz for selecting my submission for this months 24, 24, 24!   It was a great night 😀