Just hearing the word "pizza" is often enough to make our mouths water with anticipation and our stomachs grumble with intense hunger. Most of us have only one or two types of the familiar food that we prefer over all others but there are countless kinds of specialty pizzas that you can make at home and experiment with.
Instead of the usual white button mushrooms why not make a few wild mushroom pizzas for your next family gathering or special occasion? Oven roast one or two types of wild mushrooms including choices such as the oyster, Portobello, and shiitake varieties along with another topping like roasted onions or peppers and chevre or feta cheese.
If you enjoy a smoky or spicy flavor, make southwestern pizzas with either barbeque sauce or ranch dressing instead of tomato sauce and use grilled or blackened chicken instead of pepperoni or sausage. Other toppings to consider for this particular style of pizzas include bacon bits, cheddar jack cheese, green and red peppers, red onions, and tomatoes.
For Hawaiian style pizzas, crumble sweet Canadian bacon and use along with chunks of pineapple and slices of Mandarin oranges. For pizzas with a distinct Caribbean flair, use foods such as black beans, chicken, pineapple, and red onions along with mozzarella and cheddar cheeses.
For pizzas with influences from Eastern cultures use meats like lamb or tandoori chicken and toppings including cauliflower, eggplant, scallions, and spinach. In the country of Lebanon, for example, pizzas often feature yogurt in place of the tomato sauce while in Greece extra virgin olive oil is commonly used along with Kalamata olives, sun dried tomatoes, and spinach.
Seafood is a universal ingredient that is often used for making specialty pizzas around the world. Try using shrimp marinated in a garlic sauce with scallions, roasted red peppers, and feta cheese for making simple yet impressive looking and tasting pizzas.
If you want to make pizzas that taste great but only feature healthy ingredients use foods such as whole wheat crusts, roasted nuts, vegetables like spinach leaves, and light or low fat cheeses. Tomato sauce is already low in calories so it can be used for making diet friendly pizzas without the guilt.
Also focus on fruits for making sweet tasting yet filling pizzas. Use apple slices, dried fruits like cranberries or raisins, crumbled bacon or pieces of ham, and cheeses such as cheddar, cheddar jack, Gorgonzola, mozzarella, and Parmesan.
Naturally herbs and spices play a large role in making pizzas of all flavors and types and you are only limited by your own taste buds when it comes to choosing which ones to use. Although it is true some spices complement certain foods better than others you can certainly mix several in varying amounts until you find the most pleasing combination's for adding interest to your specialty pizzas.
Some other ingredients you may want to use for making specialty pizzas include artichoke hearts, asparagus spears, beans, caramelized onions, pineapple chunks, pine nuts, pieces of grilled radicchio, and a variety of cheeses including asiago, goat, Gorgonzola, and ricotta.