Introduction: Pierogi Pizza
Combining two already delicious things into one decadent extravaganza is always a good idea, if you ask me. In this instructable we'll combine Polish pierogi with pizza! Simple? You bet. Delightful? Absolutely!
Feel free to change up the toppings as you see fit - after all, pizza is the food of unlimited variation!
Pizza dough (store bought or home made)
Mozzarella and cheddar cheese
Pepperoni or sausage
10-12 Frozen or fresh pierogi
Pizza peel or perforated pizza pan
Step 1: Make Your Dough
If you're using store-bought dough, you can skip this step.
I absolutely love this pizza dough recipe because it's super easy to make, and is absolutely delicious. Plus, all the measurements are weighed out, which eliminates all the guesswork! Remember, baking is a science, and it's important to be precise! I'll often cut the ingredients in half if I only want to make two pizzas instead of four.
Add the ingredients as per the instructions. I highly encourage you to measure out everything with a kitchen scale rather than working by volume. It really does make a huge difference. I like to knead everything in my stand mixer using a dough hook, but you can knead the dough by hand if you like.
Once the kneading is complete, separate the dough into four (if you're making a full batch) or two (if you're making a half batch) equal-sized balls. Place each ball in a sealed container. I like to spritz each container with just a touch of oil to keep the dough from sticking.
The recipe recommends "cold fermenting" the dough for 24 to 72 hours. So go ahead and pop those balls of dough in the fridge! This time spent in the fridge helps bring out the flavour of the dough. I'll typically leave the dough to rise for 36-48 hours.
Step 2: Oven and Dough Prep
Preheat the oven to 550F (285C). Place the baking stone in the middle of the oven while it's warming up. The oven should preheat for about an hour.
You can also bake your pizzas on your BBQ, something I love to do in the warmer months! Just place the baking stone on the grill surface and let it heat up with the BBQ. I typically aim for a temperature in the 550-600F range.
Whether you're using store-bought or home made dough, remove it from the fridge and allow it to come up to room temperature. If you've previously had your dough in a container, i recommend removing it from the container and wrapping it in plastic wrap. It will warm up faster that way! Store bought dough usually comes in a plastic bag already, so you can leave it as-is while the oven preheats.
Step 3: Cook the Pierogi
While the oven/BBQ is pre-heating and the dough is coming up to room temperature, you can heat up the pierogi. I typically buy frozen pierogi and just cook them according to the package instructions.
In a cold frying pan, add a few tablespoons of oil. Then, add a few tablespoons of water. Last, add about 10-12 frozen pierogi to the pan (or enough for one pizza). Cover the frying pan (I use a pizza pan!) and set the burner to medium heat. The oil will prevent the pierogi from sticking, and the heat from the steaming water helps took the tops of the pierogi. I like to cook the pierogi until the bottoms turn a golden brown, about 8-10 minutes.
Normally when I'm making pierogi on their own, I'll flip them each upside down and allow the other side to reach a nice golden brown as well. But in this case you don't have to do that. Just take them out when the bottoms are done.
Step 4: Stretch the Dough
After warming on the counter, the dough should be ready to stretch. It should be at room temperature, and fairly soft. If it isn't, then you'll have difficulty stretching it properly and it will tend to crack or spring back.
Cover the dough ball in flour on all sides. If you can do that neat trick of spinning the dough in mid-air, then go for it! I am not so talented, so I like to stretch it by pulling out the dough while working all the way around the perimeter in multiple passes. Between the pull of gravity and squeezing/pulling the dough at the top, I can usually get it reasonably round!
Some people prefer a nice thick crust, and some a thin crust. Do whatever you like here! After you've stretched dough a few times you'll get a feel for where to apply pressure to the dough to get exactly the crust you're looking for.
Lay the stretched dough on a pizza peel or pizza pan covered in flour or corn meal. The flour/meal prevents the dough from sticking.
If you see and bubbles start to form on the surface of the dough, pop them with a fork. I'll typically stab the dough all over with a fork, to prevent those tiny bubble from forming into massive mountains while baking!
Step 5: Decorate!
Spread a thin layer of pizza sauce or pasta sauce (or bbq sauce or whatever!) on the dough. Don't use too much sauce or the crust will get soggy.
Cover the sauce with a blend of mozzarella and cheddar cheese. I find the addition of gooey cheddar really compliments the pierogi.
Next, decorate the pizza with your cooked pierogi, pepperoni, sausage, garlic, etc. Do NOT add the green onion at this stage!
Dust the top with a touch of smoked paprika to give it a kick.
Step 6: Time to Bake!
If you're baking in an oven, turn it OFF. The bottom of the pizza will bake just from the heat contained in the baking stone! Then turn ON the broiler. My oven has a high and low broil, I usually use high broil. Keep a close eye on your pizza because high broil will scorch the top of your pizza real quick.
Like, seriously. Go pee before you start baking, hold all calls, pause your Netflix show. Do NOT abandon your pizza while it's under the broiler.
If you're using your BBQ, just leave it cranked.
Pop the oven door and slide your pizza onto the baking stone. Due to the flour/corn meal it should slide off the pizza peel or pan easily with just a flick of your wrist. Close the door immediately and set a timer for four minutes. At the four minute mark start watching the pizza through the oven window. As soon as it looks done (crust and pierogi starting to brown, cheese bubbling and also turning brown), open the oven and slide the peel or pizza pan between the pizza and the baking stone to remove it.
Place your beautiful pizza on a wood cutting board so it can start cooling.
Step 7: Finishing Touches
While the pizza is cooling, decorate it with sour cream and green onions.
Decorate the second/third/fourth pizzas as you see fit, and cycle them through as you did the first one. Always remember to dust the pizza peel/pan with flour or corn meal between each pizza, and always WATCH your pizza while it's broiling.
Enjoy! Cieszyć się! Buon appetito!
First Prize in the
Pizza Speed Challenge 2020