homemade pizza… we eat this weekly. zion almost always assembles the pizza, once the dough is rolled out, so it’s become known as zion’s pizza. the dough is easy to throw together, takes an hour to rise, and in our small (and in the summertime, warm) kitchen it usually takes less than an hour. we have tried several recipes for a good dough, and this one has become one of our favorites. andy has done dough that rises overnight, and is way more complex, but when i am making this every week i like to do something simple. and this is just as good as his overnight fancy doughs. so, we’ve stuck with it.
the recipe is adapted from this cookbook (which is another favorite, with beautiful photos!) and i double the recipe to make 2 pizzas and a batch of breadsticks, or 3 pizzas. we use andy’s homemade pizza sauce that i freeze in portions for each pizza night. and i’d love to share it with you but the recipe is in his head and he changes it each time, so until we get it down on paper, i have nothing to share. but, give it a try sometime. use your own sauce, or store bought, and top with your favorite ingredients. you’ll enjoy having homemade pizza deliciousness for dinner.
(yields 3 pizzas or 2 pizzas + breadsticks)
2 packages (4½-5 tsp.) active dry yeast
2 tsp. sugar
2 cups warm water (100°-110ºF)
2 tsp. kosher salt
4 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
6 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
In a mixing bowl, or the bowl of a standing electric mixer, fitted with a dough hook, combine the yeast, sugar, and warm water and gently stir to dissolve. Allow mixture to stand until foamy, approximately 5-10 minutes.
If using a mixer, turn to low and slowly stir in the salt and extra-virgin olive oil. Add the flour, slowly, on low speed, until the flour is fully incorporated. As the flour mixture comes together, increase speed slowly to medium and allow machine to knead into a nice ball, about 5 minutes. Feel the dough and if its’ too crumbly add more water, if it’s too sticky, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and fold it over itself a few times, kneading until it becomes smooth and elastic. Place in a well-oiled bowl and coat the dough entirely with the oil. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel. Let rest in a warm area until doubles in size, approximately 1 hour.
If you make the dough by hand, stir salt and extra-virgin olive oil into the yeast mixture. Then slowly begin adding in flour, stirring with a wooden spoon. As it becomes too stiff to add more flour begin kneading the remainder of the flour in by hand until you’ve formed a nice dough that is soft and not too sticky. Continue to knead together (adding more flour or water if too sticky or dry, 1 tablespoon at a time) until smooth and elastic. Place in a well-oiled bowl and coat the dough entirely with the oil. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel. Let rest in a warm area until doubles in size, approximately 1 hour.
When the dough has doubled in size, punch down dough and knead on a floured surface to create a nice round mound. Portion into three sections and roll each section into shape of pizza desired. Place on pizza tray, stone, or baking tray and spread with pizza sauce, cheeses, and toppings. Bake in a 550ºF oven (or highest temperature on your oven) and bake until cheese is bubbly and crust is golden brown. Ovens vary so the cook time may differ greatly. For us, we rotate pizza from the top rack to bottom rack after 5 minutes and usually bake another 4-5 minutes before removing.
If making breadsticks, roll out the dough and spread on one half of the dough ingredients – roasted garlic, parmesan cheese, olive, oil, pesto or your favorite breadstick ingredients, and fold other half of dough on top of ingredients. Slice into thin strips and twist each strip into a long twisted shape, and place on parchment lined baking tray. Top with extra-virgin olive oil and/or parmesan & mozzarella cheese. Bake as mentioned above for pizza.
♥Please be very careful when working with an oven this hot!