Monday, February 2, 2009

pizza pizzazz

My friend Karen just asked me for a pizza dough recipe. This recipe is one of my favorites in part because it is very versatile and works up so quick. The original recipe was published in The Tightwad Gazette by Amy Dacyczyn as Cuban Bread; I modified it to use for pizza, calzones, parmesan sticks, anything that requires a pizza-type dough. The "big" difference, as far as I can tell, between pizza dough and bread dough is the addition of oil. This helps create a chewy, denser crust and adds some of that delicious flavor. The addition of ground ginger may seem a little strange but it's a tip I learned from my Uncle Joe. He claimed that the ginger "aggravated" the yeast and helped it to rise the dough. Research shows that he was right and the tiny bit of ginger does not seem to have a measurable flavor effect. Give it a try.

Pizza Dough

5 C. whole wheat flour
1 T. yeast
2 C. hot water
1 T. salt
1 T. sugar
1/2 t. ground ginger
2 T. olive oil

mix together 3 C. wheat flour, yeast, salt, sugar and ginger
make a well in the center of the flour mixture
add water and oil
stir together
add in remaining flour until a smooth dough has been formed
grease the dough (I grease the dough instead of the bowl to ensure complete coverage)
cover with a towel and let sit one hour or until doubled in bulk
turn out onto a floured surface
punch down the dough
knead 4-5 times and start making pizza

And if you're making a lot of pizza I have quadrupled this recipe before and it still works fine.

Enjoy!

edited: It was pointed out that I forgot the pizza baking directions so here's the second half of the recipe.

preheat the oven to 400 degrees F
(note: I like to use unglazed floor tiles in my oven as a pizza stone, they give great coverage and hold the heat very well)
have cornmeal ready to sprinkle on the pizza peel to help prevent the pizza from sticking
if you don't have a peel you can put the cornmeal directly on the tiles, just be careful transferring the pizza into and out of the oven

Cut the dough in half and roll out into your pizza base
mix together 1/4 C. olive oil and 1 clove crushed garlic
brush some olive oil mixture onto the top of the pizza base
par bake the crust for 5-7 minutes until base starts to bubble
take out of the oven, crush the bubbles
top with your favorite sauce, toppings and cheese
return to the oven and bake another 10-12 minutes until done

picture courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

3 comments:

K said...

Thanks, Mira!!

H. said...

Hi Mira! How many of what size pizza does this recipe make?
H.

Mira Dessy said...

With a single batch of the dough I usually get two medium sized pizzas. If I double it I usually get 4 but sometimes get 5.