For a long time now Mike has been after me to make homemade pizza. He is a bit of a pizza freak! I have been putting it off and putting it off, mostly because I figured it would be hard to make. After hearing how good the Daring Bakers October 2008 challenge of Pizza dough was, I thought I would give it a try.
Basic Pizza Dough
(From The Bread Baker’s Apprentice: Mastering The Art of Extraordinary Bread By Peter Reinhart)
4 1/2 cups all purpose flour (chilled)
1 3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon instant yeast
1/4 cup olive oil or vegetable oil (optional) ~ I left it for the simple reason of not having enough in the bottle
1 3/4 cups water (ice cold)
1 tablespoon sugar
Semolina/durum flour or cornmeal for dusting
1. Mix together flour, salt and yeast in larger bowl of stand mixer (we don’t have a stand mixer so a wooden spoon worked just fine)
2. Add the oil, water and sugar and mix well (with a wooden spoon or the paddle attachment on the mixer on low speed) until you form a sticky ball of dough. On clean surface, knead for about 5-7 minutes (or if using a mixer with a dough hook, set to the medium speed for the same amount of time) until the dough is smooth and the ingredients are homogeneously distributed. If the dough is too wet add a little bit of flour, too dry add a bit of water.
3. Flour the counter and line a jelly pan with parchment paper (I don’t have a jelly pan so I just used a large cookie sheet instead). Lightly oil the paper.
4. Cut the dough into 6 equal pieces (I would cut them into less, they were fairly small)
5. Sprinkle flour over the dough and flour your hands as well. Round each piece into a ball.
6. Transfer the balls into the lined jelly pan, and mist generously with spray oil. Wrap the pan with plastic wrap.
7. Place the ran in the fridge and let rest overnight or up to three days.
8. Two hours before you make the pizza remove the pizza dough from the fridge. Place on parchment paper and sprinkle with flour. Press the dough into disks about 1/2 inch thick. Sprinkle again with flour, mist with oil and wrap lightly. Let sit for 2 hours.
9. At least 45 minutes before making the pizza, place a baking stone on the lower third of the oven. Preheat the oven as hot as possible (500° F/260° C). (If you do not have a baking stone, then use the back of a jelly pan. Do not preheat the pan)
10. Generously sprinkle the back of a pan with semolina/durum flour or cornmeal. Flour your hands and pick up One piece of dough. Lay the dough across your fists in a very delicate way and carefully stretch it by bouncing it in a circular motion on your hands, and by giving it a little stretch with each bounce. Once the dough has expanded outward, move to a full toss.
11. Place the pizza dough on the back of the pan, making sure there is enough semolina/durum flour or cornmeal to allow it to slide and not stick to the pan.
12. Lightly top the pizza with toppings of your choice.
13. Put pizza on the pizza stone or pan and place in the oven. Cook for 5-8 minutes.
14. Take the pizza out of the oven and transfer it to a cutting board or your plate. Allow the cheese to set a little by waiting a few minutes before slicing.
Everyone made something different, They turned out great!
The recipe was amazing! Everyone raved out it, people who normally don’t eat pizza even like it. This is something I will defiantly be making again. It was so simple and easy.