It is so easy and so tempting to order pizza these days, even I give into the temptation when I feel particularly lazy or unmotivated. However I never fail to pay for that convenience, higher salt content and higher calories, then when I make it from scratch.
Admittedly, I used to male it from “scratch” buying prepared pizza dough or those convenient pre-baked crusts. Then I just got tired of the salt content and decided to make my own. It isn’t hard and the result are far tastier, plus you get to use up leftovers creatively!
Pizza Crust 101
1 1/2 cups of bread flour
1 1/4 teaspoons yeast
2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/2 to 1 cup of water
Combine all ingredients into your mixture with the dough hook attachment or your bread machine. The amount of water needed will vary based on where you live and the humidity of your house and climate. Mix until well combined then place in a light oiled bowl to rise for thirty minutes to an hour, covered with a towel. After an hour, punch the dough down to remove any air pockets and cover and let rise another 30 minutes to an hour. Light sprinkle your baking surface with corn meal (prevents sticking) and bake at 425 degrees for 8-10 minutes.
Secrets for success: season the dough prior to rising. I generally add fresh cracked black pepper to taste, 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon of onion powder, and herbs to taste. Also, pre-baking prior to topping leads to even crust baking and non-soggy pizza crust.
In the time it takes to throw a load in the washer, get the kids and dog settled, you can have homemade pizza dough rising. I usually split the dough after the first rise so that I can make two small pizzas. Tonight, I made Mexican Pizza and Salami Pizza.
Admittedly, I won’t win a prize for photography anytime soon but the pizza is long gone.