Sunday, October 7, 2012

Kick-off Pizza Crust


Its delicious. Even crummy pizza is still good, you know?

Every once in a while I make a homemade pizza. It can be as easy as buying dough from the grocery store. Or as complicated as making all components from scratch.

A good pizza crust recipe will always include semolina flour, however its a touch pricey and unless you are making homemade bread and pasta you will rarely use it.

This recipe can be interchanged with semolina if you want to get fancy :)

Start out with 1 packet of active dry yeast and 1 cup of warm water. Set mixture aside and start with the dry ingredients...Try not to use your mixer, take your rings off and get your hands in there to mix this dough. It's worth it.

Like I said above, if you want to be a big shot, go with semolina, at a 50/50 ratio to white flour.

You could even use whole wheat flour but I've learned never to serve your husband a whole wheat pizza during a football game.

Start with] hb]= about 2 and 3/4 cups of flour. 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp sugar. Combine in a large bowl. Mix in 2 tablespoons olive oil and once your yeast/water mixture has begun to get frothy, slowly pour into your dry ingredients. Mix with your hands until you get a solid sticky lump of dough.

Continue working the dough in circles until you get a smooth round ball. Place in a greased(olive oil) bowl and let the dough rest. Take a few pieces of wet paper towels and lay them over the bowl.

About 1 hour on the counter.

Since its been such a crazy weekend around here I used my freezer collection of homemade tomato sauce that I specifically save up for this reason. You can use your favorite jarred sauce if you like but a good pizza marinara is so simple you just need some crushed tomatoes and your favorite Italian spices. (I will share my recipe some day...maybe)

The trick to homemade pizza is that the dryer the cheese the better it melts. When you use fresh mozzarella,  which is a staple around here at the house of J, it turns into water and ruins the crust. Your best bet is a combination of a basic grocery mozzarella like Polly-o, and some grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.

For this pizza I used about 1.5 cups mozzarella and .5 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano. I also picked up some really delicious pepperoni from the deli counter at Whole Foods. Make sure to put cheese underneath the toppings as well as above :)

bake at 450 degrees for 20 minutes.. This dough recipe makes 1 large medium crust pizza.

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