What could be better than fried dough? How about sticking pizza toppings on top of it?

I first saw fried pizza made on “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives,” actually. Later, I found out the “pizza fritta” is actually quite the popular street food in Italy. Can’t imagine why?

You would think the deep fried dough would make something already heavy and indulgent into something even more heavy and indulgent. Well, that’s true and it’s not. So, there’s nothing that can beat the tender but crispy texture of fried dough. The pizza dough soaks up a bit of the oil as it fries and that flavor, in combination with the texture, makes the crust something you look forward getting to.

Because the fried dough is finished off in the oven (and this is something you can finish off on the grill as well) to let the toppings melt, a lot of the unwanted grease also melts away (or seemingly does). To cut some of that heaviness, I went with fresh ingredients and that really made a difference. It also allowed the dough to be more “front stage” since it wasn’t covered with all these heavy ingredients.

For sauce, I ended up cutting whole canned tomatoes and mixing it with a little bit of the tomato juice in the can. I think it makes everything taste fresher when you can bite into big chunks of tomato. Otherwise, everything is somewhat impromptu – buy your dough from the supermarket and top it off with ingredients that you like.

Anty tips? Don’t forget to add salt!

Directions

1. Start by heating 2-3 inches of oil over medium high heat.

2. Flour surface and divide dough into 3 pieces. Roll out to 1/4 - 1/2 inch thickness.

3. Fry for about 2 minutes each side until puffy and golden brown. Let cool on wire rack.

4. Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Begin preparing your toppings.

5. Top your pizzas starting with tomato chunks and juice.

6. Bake for 5-10 minutes.

Ready to serve.

Ingredients

(Serves 3-4)

  • Oil for frying
  • 1 ball of pizza dough
  • 3-4 tablespoons flour, for rolling
  • 1 8-oz can whole tomatoes, cut into chunks
  • pizza toppings
  • salt, for taste