Again I’m searching for the ‘Holy Grail” of pizza and finally feel I’m getting closer. There are many factors that make a pizza just good or give me another piece really good. This is as close as I have gotten so far.
I wanted to make this fun and not break out the scales to weigh everything but just make it my own and see what happens. If the dough is to wet just add more flower, if it’s to dry add more water. It’s not rocket science is it? This makes(2) 14″ pizzas or can be cut into 4 smaller ones for easier handling.
- 3-1/2 cups bread flour (used 2 cups all purpose and 1-1/2 cup Caputo 00)
- 4 teaspoon Kosher salt (almost double what I normally use)
- 1-1/2 cup lukewarm water
- 3 teaspoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons instant rise yeast (if using ADY use more like 3)
- 3 tablespoons EVOO
Add dry ingredients to a food processor or if you don’t have one place in a mixing bowl and mix by hand. If using ADY put the sugar and yeast into the water and let stand until it foams. Mix the dry with the wet until combined and it pulls away from the side of the bowl. Then add EVOO and mix. Place dough on a floured surface and cut in half, place each piece in a separate bowl oiled with just enough EVOO to coat the outside. Cover the bowls and let stand in a warm area of the kitchen for at least 1 hour or until doubled in volume.* Side note: I cold fermented the dough over night in the fridge.
Pre-heat your oven to 500F or 550F if it will go that high with a pizza stone on the top shelf. I use a 3/8″ steel plate trying to mimic a deck oven. Let the oven stay at this temp for 1 hour.
Take out your dough and on a floured surface gently pat it into a circle, pick it up and flip flop it back and forth between your hands to stretch it out. Keep working it to your desired size, if you have trouble use a rolling pin. Cover dough with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and let rest for 15 minutes.
Top lightly with sauce and the toppings of your choice then bake for 8-10 minutes. I used a homemade tomato sauce, mozzarella, Pecorino Ramano cheese, pepperoni and a drizzle of EVOO. Once cooked I added fresh chopped basil, grated parmesan and another drizzle of olive oil.
My first launch stuck to the pizza peel so I salvaged it by transfering to a baking sheet. If you have trouble using a peel just do it this way, it was not pretty but tasted good.
Slightly frustrated I used more flour and corn meal on the peel to launch the second one. You can also pre cook the crust for a few minutes then pull it out to top and continue cooking (fail safe procedure) .