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Sunday, January 23, 2011

Basic Pizza

We have pizza and movie night every Friday night.  We have been doing that tradition for 6 years now and needless to say the basic pepperoni pizza looses its appeal after awhile.  Although my kids swear they could have Little Casers every week and be just fine with it.  So over the year we have experimented to find our favorite pizzas.  We have had breakfast pizza, BBQ pizza, pizza rolls, Mexican pizza and any other combination we could think of.  I grew up with whole wheat pizza dough but my family remains unconverted.  This is the basic pizza that we all like, white flour and all.  This dough uses bread flour which is DIFFERENT than regular flour.  It gives the dough a chewier texture.  You can make the dough with a mixer or by hand but it is easiest with a food processor (something I never would have thought but it is true).  You can make the dough the night before, refrigerate it covered in plastic wrap and then let rise at room temperature 30 minutes before you need it.

Basic Pizza Dough
4 c bread flour plus extra for the counter
2 1/4 tsp instant yeast
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 3/4 c water, warm
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp basil

1. Pulse flour, yeast and salt in a food processor till combined.  Add the oil, oregano and basil.  Pulse till combined.  With the processor running pour the water in until a rough ball forms, 30-40 seconds.  Let the dough rest for 2 minutes and then process for 30 seconds longer.
2. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead by hand until it forms a smooth round ball, about 5 minutes.  Transfer the ball to an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place until doubled, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
3. Spray pizza pan with oil.  Sprinkle pan with 1 Tbsp cornmeal.  Roll out dough into 2 18 inch pizzas.  Prick all over with a fork.  Bake in a 400 degree oven for 10 minutes.  Cover with sauce and toppings.  Bake for 10-15 more minutes at 400 degrees until crust is golden.

Basic Pizza Sauce
1 onion, chopped
1 Tbsp oil
1 8 oz can tomato paste
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp basil
1 1/2 c beef broth (or 1 1/2 tsp beef bouillon and 1 1/2 c water)
1. Cook onion in oil over medium heat, till soft, about 5 minutes. (If in a hurry you can skip this step and use dried onion pieces)
2. Add the rest of ingredients and stir till warm and thoroughly combined.


The Skeehan Family said...

Something we've learned from our pizza making, you can buy dough from the bakery of most grocery stores (~$1.50) and save yourself the hassle of have to it.