Sunday, May 15, 2011

Pizza Dough

The weather managed to hold out just enough for me to get some plants.  This year we are trying patio tomatoes (meant for pots), basil, rosemary, cilantro, parsley, and hot cherry peppers.  Can you guess which ones Mr. J picked out.  I am keeping my fingers crossed they are successful.  My main worry this year is deer.  Apparently we have some living in the woods off to the side of our building.  According to Mr. J they eat plants.  Go figure!
Now for the food.  We have been eating pizza more often lately.  Mainly because we both have been in the mood for it.  It is so simple and I really think homemade pizza is a healthy all in one meal.  You can hit all of the food groups in this one dish. 
Each time we have made pizza lately I have been switching up the crusts.  Sometimes I get the pre-made refrigerated kind in the grocery store.  I think the quality is pretty good and the price not that bad.  It is perfect for the 20 minutes before meal time, oh let's have pizza idea. 
I don't think homemade pizza crust is all that difficult though if you have the time and a Kitchen Aid.  The total process for homemade crust takes about 5 minutes hands-on time but 3 hours total time for the rising process.  I think about food all of the time, pretty much the second I am done with one meal I start thinking about my next meal.  I don't ALWAYS make up my mind for what I will ACTUALLY eat three hours ahead of time.  Hence, homemade pizza crust does not always work out.  The whole working hours thing also gets in the way.  
Recently though I tried out making the dough in the morning and putting it in the fridge to rise.  The cold air slows down the process so when you get home at 5pm it is all ready to go.  I was more than happy with how it turned out. 

Pizza Dough
Adapted from Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
2 teaspoons yeast (1 package)
2 teaspoons coarse kosher or sea salt, plus extra for sprinkling
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1. Combine yeast and 1/2 C warm water in small bowl.  Let rise till foamy.  In a food processor or Kitchen Aid mix flour and salt.  Once the yeast has proofed turn the machine on and add yeast water and oil.  Add another 1/2 C of water so the dough comes together.

2. Process for about 30 seconds, adding more water if needed, a little at a time, until the mixture forms a ball and is slightly sticky to the touch. If it is still dry, add another tablespoon or two of water and process for another 10 seconds. (In the unlikely event that the mixture is too sticky, add flour a tablespoon at a time.)

3. Turn the dough onto a floured work surface and knead by hand for a few seconds to form a smooth, round dough ball. Put the dough in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap; let rise until the dough doubles in size, 1 to 2 hours. (You can cut this rising time short if you’re in a hurry, or you can let the dough rise more slowly, in the refrigerator, for up to 6 or 8 hours.) Proceed to Step 4 or wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap or a zipper bag and freeze for up to a month. (Defrost in the bag or a covered bowl in the refrigerator or at room temperature; bring to room temperature before shaping.)

4. When the dough is ready, form it into a ball and divide it into 2 or more pieces if you like; roll each piece into a round ball. Put each ball on a lightly floured surface, sprinkle with flour, and cover with plastic wrap or a towel. Let rest until they puff slightly, about 20 minutes.

  1. Substitute whole wheat flour 1:1 for all purpose flour
  2. Add 2 Tbsp Italian seasonings to flour
  3. Substitute 1/4 C cornmeal for 1/4 C flour

Basically the tradition is after receiving this award I must now tell you 7 things about myself that you didn't already know and then pass this onto 15 other amazing blogs.  I don't know if I can make this challenge espeically after I just did a Friday Five of the 5 things you don't know about me.   We shall see...
  1. I have trouble pronoucing words with "R" in them.  For instance, "rural" is not going to happen.
  2. I don't like anyone, not even Mr. J, to touch my pillows. I am a bit OCD on this.  I put my face on that and well I like it clean.  Biggest pet peeve ever. 
  3. As much as I love food, if left to my own devices I would probably live off of raw veggies, cereal, and fruit.
  4. I watched Titanic like 12 times in the movie theathers.  I was obsessed to the 10th degree.  Then when it came out on video my parents got it for me for my birthday.  I never watched it once.
  5. I naturally have an upset look on my face about 95% of the time.  When I am thinking deeply, I look mad.
  6. I love, love, love Real Simple magazine.
  7. I don't have a Masters degree and I am not sure how I feel about that.
Phew, that wasn't so bad.  Now I must pass this lovely award onto 15 other fabulous bloggers!  So many to pick from:


  1. Fabulous looking pizza, making bread is so much easier with a Kitchenaid, isn't it? :) Congrats on the award, well deserved!

  2. I was just thinking of making pizza, yours looks wonderful! I love How to Cook Everything, everything I've made from it has been a success.

  3. The pizza looks fantastic! I also love making my own crust, when I have the time... I am going to keep in mind your refrigerator tip for next time!

  4. Hey, what a great looking pizza. Glad the challenge worked out ok for you!

    Pizza Equipment


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