Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Pizza 101: basic dough recipe

In today's lesson we will learn the basics of making pizza dough. I will show you two ways to make it.  Using a mixer with the dough hook attachment or using your hands.  Anyone can make this simple recipe, so let's get started!

 The recipe for the dough is at the end of this post.  
First let's start by making with with your hands:
Make a well in the flour and salt.  Either on the counter or in a bowl. If you are a first timer, use a bowl. Pour yeast that is all foamy and ready and olive oil into the well.

Don't try to take pictures and do this on the counter, I sprung a leak!!  
Work the dough into a ball with your hands.

Knead dough for 5-8 minutes until it is all incorporated and smooth.
 Place in an oiled bowl and oil the dough.  Cover with plastic wrap and a towel.  
Let rise for 1.5 hours.

Now using the mixer:
  Place all ingredients into the mixing bowl. 

Your dough is done when it has mixed for 5 minutes after it has started to pull away from the sides.  The dough should come off the hook and leave nothing behind.  If it is sticky add a little extra flour and keep mixing.

It also won't stick to your hands as you roll it into a ball to let rest.  Spray the bowl with cooking oil and coat the dough with olive oil. 

Cover with plastic wrap and a towel and let rise for 1.5 hours.
This is a double recipe all done rising.

If you make the dough by hand or using a mixer you will do the following:
Punch down dough and turn out onto a floured surface.  Separate dough into balls, this is a double recipe, a single recipe would have 2 larger balls and 1 smaller.  Let this rest for 20 minutes under plastic wrap.

Using your hands press dough into a circle.  Roll out dough with a rolling pin until it is the size of your pan, this is a 16" pan.  

We will get to the baking tomorrow but the full recipe is here!

Pizza Dough- recipe by me! 

A single recipe makes 2 16" and 1 12' pizzas rolled very thin. 

1 package active dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup  warm water about 110 degrees
3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil

Place one cup warm water in a glass measuring cup.  Add 1 packet of yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar and stir to dissolve.  Let the yeast stand for 5-10 minutes until it starts to foam.  Put the flour and salt into a mixing bowl.  Add yeast and olive oil and turn mixer on low.  As the dough starts to form turn mixer up to medium and let the dough mix for 5 minutes.  When the dough releases from the side of the bowl and is stuck on the dough hook, you are done.  The dough should not be sticky when you touch it.  Take the dough out of the bowl and roll it into a ball.  Spray cooking spray into the mixing bowl.  Put the dough ball back into the bowl and toss with some olive oil.  Cover bowl with plastic wrap and a towel. Let rise for at least an hour and a half until dough has doubled in size.  

Preheat oven to 500 degrees, or as hot as your oven will go with the pizza stone in the oven.  Punch down dough and turn dough onto a floured surface.  Separate dough into smaller balls.  Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 30 minutes.  Press dough into a round shape with your hands.  With a rolling pin, roll the dough super thin to the size that fits your pizza pan.  I can see my ugly counter tops though the dough.  Place on pizza pans sprayed with cooking spray. Decorate pizzas.  Bake 6 minutes on the pizza pan and if it releases easy, take off the pan with a pizza peel then bake 5 more minutes on a pizza stone.  Bake until the crust is crispy, it will be brown on the bottom.  

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