McKinzie Pizza Night


golden and bubbly on the top + thin and crispy on the bottom = perfect pizza
golden and bubbly on the top + thin and crispy on the bottom = perfect pizza

It is official.  Saturday is McKinzie Pizza night (or day).  We are in love.  We have tried for a weekly pizza night for awhile.  We would get on a kick, and then we wouldn’t be on the kick.  Then… Jeremy and Katie Daggett came to live with us this past January.  I wrote and asked permission to post their recipe.  What I love is that it is simple to put together and has a super crazy short rise time.  We are HUGE fans of THIN CRUST.  If you are a thin crust fan, this might just be the pizza crust recipe for you…

First, let me introduce you to our professors from El Instituto de Pizza Making in Arequipa, Jeremy and Katie:

Jeremy, the TCK from Italy.  The dough roller.
Jeremy: the TCK from Italy. The dough roller, topping adder, baker.
Katie, the dough mixer, topping dicer, and cheese grater
Katie: the dough mixer, topping dicer, and cheese grater

Jeremy and Katie taught us their ways, and we are forever indebted to them.  They are possibly considering a pizza place in Arequipa when they move here next year.  They can count on my business!

So Pizza is really three parts: the crust, the sauce, the toppings.  Here we go…

Daggett Pizza Thin Crust Recipe (makes 3-4 pizzas)

  • 1 1/2 cups warm water
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp yeast
  • 3 1/2 – 4 cups flour

Mix all. Form one giant dough ball.  Coat with olive oil.  Leave in warm place to rise for 45 minutes (or less if you don’t have the 45 minutes).

After rising, separate dough into four equal parts.  Roll each dough ball into the shape of pan.  (We have 1 round pan and two cookie sheets.  I have mastered turning this recipe into 4 crusts.  They end of super thin which means super delicious.)


Next, the sauce.  I love a good marinara sauce, and I found a good recipe where I blended various ingredients and then allowed them to simmer on the stove, but this sauce is way easier and tastes just fine for our thin crust.

Daggett Pizza Sauce

  • 2 packages or one jar of tomato sauce
  • 1/2 Tbs (more or less) dried oregano

Mix in a small bowl.  Spoon a thin layer over each unbaked crust.  Delish.


Now for the toppings.  Everyone has their favorites, but this is what our family highly recommends:

  • fresh chopped basil
  • thinly sliced Roma tomatoes
  • fresh chopped spinach
  • chopped artichoke hearts
  • pepperoni
  • ham
  • sliced, pickled jalapeños (Greg only)
  • 1/3 of a large block of shredded mozzarella cheese (for four pizzas)

We love this pizza.  I bake our pizzas, knowing that all ovens are different, in a gas oven at 255 degrees Celcius for 20 minutes.  It is even more delicious reheated in a toaster over–gives it that extra crispy crunch.  We make it on Saturdays, and always have enough left-overs for Sunday night (a night that I never want to cook).

Tips I picked up from the Daggetts

  • ham actually tastes decent on pizza and it is the cheaper option
  • scissors are the greatest for cutting up a pizza
  • fresh basil and fresh tomato slices will rock your face off when it comes to thin crust pizza
  • this dough recipe can also be used to make Focaccia bread.  Spread the entire dough ball evenly in a cookie sheet, brush olive oil over the surface, sprinkle salt and dried rosemary over the top.  Bake for 20 minutes.  It goes great with Italian dishes.
  • Artichokes really compliment the fresh basil and tomatoes on the pizza.
  • Don’t worry with making your crusts perfectly cover the surface of the pan.  Rustic looking pizza tastes better.  🙂
McKinzie Pizza Night

Bruschetta Pizza

Thinking of summer still!  What a great use of fresh tomatoes and basil.  This recipe was found in my Taste of Home June/July 2009 magazine.  It was a hit for everyone.  Greg loves his pizza sauce.  He warned me that he might not like it because there was no sauce.  Well, he liked it!  Score.  This recipe will definitely stay in my rotation of pizzas and calzones.  It was also super easy and fast to put together.

Bruschetta Pizza

PREP: 25 minutes  BAKE: 10 minutes  YIELD: 8 slices

  • 1/2 pound reduced fat bulk pork sausage (or chorizo argentino here in Peru)
  • 1 prebaked Italian bread shell crust
  • 1 pkg sliced turkey pepperoni
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1-1/2 cups chopped plum tomatoes
  • 1/2 c sliced basil leaves
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 Tbs sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp minced fresh thyme or 1/8 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • Additional fresh basil leaves, optional

In a small skillet, cook sausage over medium heat until no longer pink; drain.  Place crust on an ungreased baking sheet.  Top with pepperoni, sausage and cheese.  Bake at 450 for 10-12 minutes or until cheese is melted.

In a small bowl, combine the tomatoes, sliced basil, oil, garlic, thyme, vinegar, salt and pepper.  Spoon over the pizza.  Garnish with the basil if desired.

It is also super easy to put the tomato mixture on just one side for those that don't care for it…

Bruschetta Pizza