If You Have A Grill, You Should Be Grilling Pizza

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Our friends Mark and Diana, who live up the street from us, have made a terrible mistake. The mistake is this: they fed us grilled pizza and now we’ll be demanding it on a regular basis.

How did I not know this? I mean, I knew this–I’ve watched Ina Garten throw a grilled pizza party on T.V.–but I didn’t know how good it was. Do you know? Here’s what happens: because of the high heat of the grill, the pizza gets charry and crisp on the bottom (like what happens in the high-temperature oven at a fancy pizza restaurant) and then you top it with whatever you want to top it with, you close the lid, and moments later you have totally excellent pizza. And if you shape your pizza dough into a large oval, you can feed a big group of people quite happily, as Mark and Diana did last night for us and our visiting friends Patty and Lauren.

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Burrata

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Bar Pitti in the West Village is a reasonably-priced restaurant; you can get pastas there for close to $10 that rival some of the better pastas in the city (I especially admire their eponymous pasta, one that involves sausage, tomatoes and cream.) However, two weeks ago, I found an item on their menu to be a bit overpriced: burrata for $19.

Craig really wanted it. “Ooooh,” he said. “Should we splurge?”

“No!” I yelped, or exclaimed, I don’t tend to yelp. “I can get burrata at Union Market in Park Slope for $9.”

Emotional Intelligence is a measure of how long you can delay gratification. Craig showed great emotional intelligence that night and, sure enough, as his reward I bought him burrata from Union Market last week. I also bought a container of cherry tomatoes, basil and a shallot and concocted the dish you see above; (slice the tomatoes in half, thinly slice the shallot, julienne the basil and toss it all together with olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper.)

What is burrata? Burrata, according to Wikipedia, is: “a fresh Italian cheese, made from mozzarella and cream. The outer shell is solid mozzarella while the inside contains both mozzarella and cream, giving it a unique soft texture.”

Yes: indeed, when you cut into burrata it’s like whipped cream inside a marshmallow. Add those acidic tomatoes, splashes from that vinegar to cut the creaminess, and you have a superior summer dish.

“Mmmmmmm,” sang Craig, something he really does (I know I have Craig “mmmmmm” too much on my blog.)

“See, aren’t you glad you waited?”

But he didn’t answer. He was in burrata heaven.