Pizza Dough

M requested a new pizza dough so this is what I decided to try. It wasn’t as good as this one, but I’m pretty partial to it. This had a nice texture and chew, it was really easy to work with; but there was nothing remarkable about the flavor. It’s just a good basic recipe, but my search for the perfect dough for him isn’t over. He really loves California Pizza Kitchen’s dough. I have to admit, it’s really good – so if I am able to find something that comes close it would be my new favorite. I doubled this recipe and ended up with four 11 ounce balls of dough, two are stashed in the freezer. I made one pizza Margarita and one barbecue chicken pizza (a la CPK, his fave – of course). The kids and I enjoyed the new (to them) pizza margarita and M happily ate four of his – pizza night is always a hit in this family 🙂 Thanks for reading, enjoy!

Pizza Dough – adapted from Food Network
  • 1 package active dry or fresh yeast
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 cup warm water, 105 to 115 degrees F
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional for brushing
Directions:

In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast and honey in 1/4 cup warm water.

In a food processor, combine the flour and the salt. Add the oil, the yeast mixture, and the remaining 3/4 cup of water and process until the mixture forms a ball. (The pizza dough can also be made in a mixer fitted with a dough hook. Mix on low speed until the mixture comes cleanly away from the sides of the bowl and starts to climb up the dough hook).

Turn the dough out onto a clean work surface and knead by hand 2 or 3 minutes longer. The dough should be smooth and firm. Cover the dough with a clean, damp towel and let it rise in a cool spot for about 2 hours. (When ready, the dough will stretch as it is lightly pulled).

Divide the dough into 4 balls, about 6 ounces each. Work each ball by pulling down the sides and tucking under the bottom of the ball. Repeat 4 or 5 times. Then on a smooth, unfloured surface, roll the ball under the palm of your hand until the top of the dough is smooth and firm, about 1 minute. Cover the dough with a damp towel and let rest 1 hour. At this point, the balls can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated for up to 2 days.

Pizza Margarita –

  • 1 – 11 ounce ball of dough
  • 1/3 cup of pizza sauce
  • 4 ounces of fresh mozzarella
  • 10 leaves of basil
  • Parmesan cheese, Pecorino Romano cheese, olive oil for drizzling (optional)
Directions – 
*Preheat your oven to 475 about 15 minutes before you make your pizza. I use a pizza stone and place it on the lowest rack of my oven.

1. On a piece of parchment paper, shape the pizza dough into the desired diameter. I use a little olive oil to prevent sticking. Work from the inside out, and gradually move your hands away from the center of the dough. You could also do this with a rolling pin – I happen to love using my hands for the job. Once you’ve achieved the size you want, take a fork and poke the tines all over the surface of the dough.

2. Spread the pizza sauce all over, making sure to leave about an inch around the circumference. Next, take your torn mozzarella and place on top of the sauce. Because it’s fresh mozzarella, you can leave lots of empty space because this type of mozz melts beautifully and spreads itself nicely when heated. I love the stuff!  Top with basil leaves, a sprinkle of cheese and a drizzle of olive oil if desired.

3. Carefully transfer the pizza – still on its parchment paper to an upside-down sheet pan. I use it like a pizza peel to move it to the stone in the oven. Bake for about 10 minutes. Using the sheet pan again, remove the pizza from the oven and place the parchment paper and all onto a cooling rack.

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