Posts Tagged ‘pizza dough’

Pizza Night!

October 7, 2009
Pizza Night

Pizza Night

As you will likley come to find out, I am positively in love with pizza!  It is possibly one of the simplest and most versatile dinners one could possibly make, and is sure to put a smile on everyone’s face.

While I could literally go on for days expounding on the millions of possibilities pizza holds (expect more posts on this to come!) – from crust, to sauce, to toppings – for now lets begin with a simple crust recipe.  

First, let me thank my sweet friend, Erin, for sharing her crust recipe with me years ago and getting me hooked on homemade pizza dough.  Second, please do not be scared of yeast!  There was a time not all that long ago when I would take one look at a recipe calling for yeast and quickly dismiss it as too involved…all the proofing, and rising, and kneading, and punching just seemed overly complicated.  But yeast breads can be so simple!  If you are new to bread making, please give this a try and let me know what you think!

Pizza Crust Recipe:  

yield – 1 large crust (8 slices); time in the kitchen – 15 min for crust prep and 5-10 min for toping pizza

  1. In a glass measuring cup mix:  1 Tblsp yeast , 1 tsp sugar, and 1 cup very warm water (as warm as is comfortable to put your hand into)
  2. In a large mixing bowl combine:  3 cups flour (white, whole wheat, or a combo), 1 generous tsp salt 
  3. Add yeast/water mixture to flour and mix lightly with a spoon – about 10 strokes will do just fine.
  4. Pour in 1/4 cup olive oil, stir again with your spoon to mix it together a little and then begin working dough with clean hands;
  5. Knead (in the bowl, no need to dump the mess onto your counter top) until dough is smooth and a little stretchy…about 3-5 min tops. 
  6. Form dough into a ball and coat with a little olive oil to prevent it from drying out; place it back in your mixing bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap.
  7. Set aside and let rise in a warm place until doubled (about 30 min if using quick/bread machine yeast or 1.5 hours if using regular active try yeast).  Once dough has doubled in size punch it down to let the air out; you can either go on to step 8 if you are ready to eat dinner or let it rise again…up to 3 times.
  8. Flatten dough ball with your hands and place on your pan/cookie sheet/baking stone (if using metal sheet, grease first and give a light dusting of corn meal).  Use your hands to press it out into your pizza crust shape, and perfecto!
  9. Top with whatever you have in your fridge (any sort of cheese, chicken, ham, any veggies that are looking droopy, etc).  Bake for 15-20 min at 425 F.

The Key:  think about how much time you have and when you want your dough to be ready; choose either active dry or breadmachine yeast depending on your time frame.  I whiped up the dough at 6:00p before we went out to the gym this evening, and when we got back at 7:30 it was all ready to press out and top with veggies and the last tidbit of leftover chicken.