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Archive for February, 2010

Perfect Pizza Dough

This is perfect pizza dough if you’re into thin and crispy pizza. Ashley specifically asked me to post my dough recipe, so here it is. I make mine using my Kitchenaid mixer with the dough hook, but since Ash doesn’t have one of those, I’ll provide the instructions for how to make it when you have to knead it by hand. If anyone wants the Kitchenaid version, please let me know and I’ll post that one too.

Ingredients

1 cup warm water (110F)
1 (1/4 ounce) envelope active dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil plus 1.5 teaspoons to oil the bowl
1 teaspoon salt

In a large bowl, combine the water, yeast, and sugar and stir to combine. Let sit until the mixture is foamy, about 5 minutes.

Add 1 1/2 cups of the flour, 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, and the salt, mixing by hand until it is all incorporated and the mixture is smooth. Continue adding the flour, 1/4 cup at a time, working the dough after each addition, until all the flour is incorporated but the dough is still slightly sticky. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth but still slightly tacky, 3 to 5 minutes.

Oil a large mixing bowl with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil. Place the dough in the bowl and turn to oil all sides. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set in a warm, draft-free place until nearly doubled in size, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

When the dough has risen, punch down and roll out as desired. Sprinkle the pizza peel or pizza pan with cornmeal or make the pizzas on parchment paper and slide onto your preheated pizza stone.

Tips:
Divide the dough in half, and make two pizzas from it. Stretch the dough out as thin as you can get it—if it’s not cooperating and is too elastic, just let it rest for 10 minutes or so and try again. It should loosen up after a rest.

Use less toppings than you think you’ll need. Too much sauce and vegetables makes for a soggy pizza.

Preheat your oven to at least 500 degrees, with the pizza stone already in the oven. If you make the pizza on parchment, you can either lift the parchment right onto the stone (and leave it there under the pizza) or you can use a pizza peel or the back of a cookie sheet to slide the pizza (along with the parchment) right onto the stone. The thin crust pizza should only take 6-7 minutes to cook on a hot stone.

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