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Mac & Cheese Pizza

Yes, this is quite the carb load. (But really not much different than ordering pizza with bread sticks – why is that such a big combo?) It’s on the menu this year at the Calgary Stampede, and is such a hit I thought I’d give it a whirl at home. It’s easy to make – spread pizza dough with tomato sauce and scatter it with cold mac & cheese, then a sprinkling of grated mozzarella before baking in a hot oven until golden and crispy-edged.

It’s even better than I thought it would be.

And perfect if you need to carb load before a marathon, no?

To make a mac & cheese pizza, start with homemade dough (below). Divide the dough in half and roll each into a 12″-15″ round, or spread it out with your fingers onto a cornmeal-dusted rectangular baking sheet, stretching it to fit the sheet.

Spread with your choice of tomato sauce, pizza sauce or tomato paste, then scatter with cold prepared macaroni and cheese – as much as you like. Try browned butter mac & cheese, mac & cheese muffins or classic baked mac & cheese. (You could even use mac & cheese with cauliflower.)

Scatter grated mozzarella overtop (again, as much as you like) and bake in a preheated 425F oven for 20-30 minutes, or until bubbly and golden.

Basic Pizza Dough

1 pkg. (or 2 tsp.) active dry yeast
1 tsp. sugar or honey
2 1/2 3 cups flour all purpose, whole wheat, or any combination of the two (I usually use about 2 3/4 cups)
1 tsp. salt
a drizzle (1 tsp. 1 Tbsp.) olive or canola oil

In a large bowl, stir the yeast and sugar into a cup of warm water; set aside for 5 minutes, until it’s foamy. (If it doesn’t get foamy, either your water was too hot and killed the yeast or it was inactive to begin with toss it and buy fresh yeast or try again!)

Add 2 1/2 cups of the flour, salt and oil and stir until the dough comes together. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough for about 8 minutes, until it’s smooth and elastic, adding a little more flour if the dough is too sticky.

Place the dough in an oiled bowl and turn to coat all over. Cover with a tea towel or plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place for half an hour to an hour, until doubled in bulk. If you want you can let it rise more slowly in the refrigerator for up to 8 hours. Makes enough for 2 large pizzas.

 

Find even more creative summer pizzas here!

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