When we have the whole extended family at the lake each July, we each take a night to provide dinner, because otherwise trying to coordinate dinner for 25 people every evening is too arduous. This year my sister-in-law did a make-your-own-pizza dinner and it was so genius that I blatantly stole the idea and had one of my own over the weekend.
It's so easy, and great for groups. Here's how I did it:
After rolling out a big 'ole sheet of butcher paper onto my kitchen island, I plunked all the ingredients right on top and wrote the instructions on the paper. (I actually used painters paper from Home Depot because that's what I had in the garage.) This meant that we dirtied almost zero dishes and the clean up was a cinch!
We grilled the pizzas instead of baking them, saving tons of time and mess. And the taste was the same as pizza dough! Better, even. I bought three kinds of naan from Whole Foods (original, garlic, and wheat).
Guests were instructed to coat their naan with olive oil to avoid burning on the grill. I used regular Trader Joes EVOO and they used a brush to coat.
Then, toppings! Oh, how I wish I had been a better blogger and photographed all the pretty toppings. But people started arriving and I got distracted. It happens. You can imagine.
There was pizza sauce, obviously (I just used Ragu pizza sauce - shhhhhh, don't tell) and loads of cheese. You can buy huge bags of shredded mozzarella at Costco for a lot cheaper than anywhere else. In fact, I bought way too much cheese. We'll be eating cheese all week.
I also had a "fancier" shredded blend of Parmesan and Romano cheeses, pepperoni, red peppers, green peppers, onions, mushrooms, olives, and crumbled bacon (yum!). I meant to have spicy sausage, but time got away from me.
Throw 'em on the grill for as long as it takes for the the ingredients to melt together in a yummy fashion (about six minutes, we found) and then eat!
Our friends loved it! Several people made more than one. It's nice because people get to eat what they want, and I've always found that a party with a activity attached is usually a good idea. Also, pizza is appropriate for all eaters (we had a couple of vegetarians present) and ages, whereas your typical grill-out might not be.
It's a fun twist on the backyard summer gathering. Try it!