Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Homemade Pizza

We had sauce, pepperoni & cheese leftover from New Year's Eve so it seemed like a good idea to make homemade pizza again.
Homemade pizza
This time the dough recipe we used was from Wise Bread & they say the foundation for it came from Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything.

1 teaspoon rapid-rise yeast (if you use the kind that comes in packets, you need about 1/2 of a packet per batch of dough)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
a teaspoon each of garlic, dried onion, basil and ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups water (update 9/16/09 I find this dough work better with about 2/3 of the water so start with 1 cup & see if you need more)
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus an extra teaspoon
3 cups all-purpose flour (plus extra as needed)

In large mixing bowl, combine the yeast, salt, and spices. Add the water and 2 tablespoons of olive oil and give it a quick stir. Add the flour a cup at a time. When you can't stir in any more flour, switch to kneading it in. Knead until the dough is smooth. If the dough is too sticky add flour in slowly until it smooths out. Pour the remaining olive oil into the bottom of the bowl and roll the dough around until the oil coats the outside of the dough. Cover with a damp cloth and stick the whole bowl out of the way to rise. It should double in about 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Form balls out of the dough and roll them flat on a floured surface. Place the pizzas on a lightly greased baking sheet and pop in the oven for about 15 minutes. The cooking time entirely depends on the thickness of your crust and how many toppings you pile on — thin crust pizzas can take as little as 8 minutes.

This is enough dough for 2 good size pizzas or 4 personal ones.

We didn't have rapid-rise yeast so we just double the amount of yeast called for & proof it for 10 minutes in 1/4 cup of the water warmed to about 100 degrees. Also we halved the recipe since we only wanted one pizza. I found the dough was really sticky and had to keep adding flour, I probably used 2 cups for this half recipe instead of 1 1/2.

We make our pizzas on a pizza paddle & cook them on a pizza stone. That caused a little problem with this pizza because the olive oil you've rolled the dough in to rise makes it stick to the paddle. The solution seems to be to not over oil your dough, make sure your paddle is really well floured & assemble the pizza right before you plan on sliding it onto the stone. Of course you can just use the cookie sheet method in the recipe. We bought or stone for $13 & I also use it to bake bread on.

For sauce we have found a canned sauce we really like, Muir Glen Organic Pizza Sauce.
We have been fans of their canned Fire Roasted Tomatoes so when we saw this we had to try it. A can has enough sauce for about 4 pizzas so we divide it & freeze it to use later.

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Measurement Abbreviations

T = Tablespoon
t = teaspoon
c = cup
lb = pound
oz - ounce


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