Friday, December 4, 2009

Friday Night Pizza!

People are intimidated by dough. For some reason everyone must think making your own pizza dough is hard. It couldn't be easier!!! Pizza is a fun staple food in our house. This time it was sausage, onion, and mushroom pizza. YUM!

Bread flour is the secret to good dough. This type of flour has a higher gluten content and gluten is what makes a dough chewy.

Friday Night Pizza!
1 cup warm water
1 tsp active yeast
1 tsp sugar
2 1/4 cups bread flour
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp kosher salt

About an hour and a half before you want to make your pizza, start the dough. In a bowl add the water, yeast, and sugar. Let sit for a minute so the yeast can start to activate. Add one cup of flour and mix with a fork. Add the salt, 1 tbsp olive oil and remaining flour. Mix as much as you can with the fork. Once the ingredients are incorporated, knead the dough in the bowl about 20 times to build the gluten. Drizzle the remaining tbsp of olive oil on the inside of the bowl and move the dough ball around to coat. Let sit in a warm place for about 1 1/2 hours.

When you are ready to top the pizza, roll the dough out to the size of your pizza stone. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees with the pizza stone in the oven. After the oven and stone have preheated for about 15 minutes, take the stone out, sprinkle lightly with cornmeal, and place your rolled out dough on top. Pizza stones are my favorite cooking mechanism for pizza dough because the stone (when seasoned and cared for properly) pulls the moisture out of dough, resulting in a crispy crust. To properly care for the pizza stone, never put oil on the stone. By sprinkling lightly with cornmeal it allows you to keep the stone relativley clean from oils. Wash with mild detergent in hot water. Don't soak the stone. If for some reason you do get oils on the stone, bake the stone for about an hour to dry it out.

Prepare whatever topping you prefer. This time I sauteed some mushroom, onion and sausage I topped it with a good quality tomatos sauce and provolone cheese. Cook for about 15 minutes or until the cheese to done to your preference

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