Daily Bread #22: Pizza

Fresh pizza dough rising in the kitchen and a savory tomato sauce bubbling on the stove...homemade pizza is simply the best!

- Recipe -

Pizza Dough:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 2-1/4 t. (1 pkg) yeast
  • 1-1/2 t. salt
  • 1-1/4 cup water (110 ̇F.)
  • 1 T. olive oil, plus a bit more to coat bowl
  • cornmeal for dusting

Pizza Sauce:

  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 T. fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 T. fresh oregano, chopped
  • pinch of salt, to taste

Toppings:

  • shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Meats: cooked Italian sausage, salami, pepperoni, ham, grilled chicken
  • Veggies: onion, sliced mushrooms, olives, bell pepper, artichoke hearts, corn, green onion, basil
  • Parmesan cheese
  • ground oregano

To Make Pizza Dough:

1. Mix flour, yeast and salt together in bowl (with wooden spoon) or mixer (with dough hook). Add water and olive oil. Mix until dough comes together. Turn out onto a floured board and knead until dough is elastic and smooth.

2. Place ball of dough in an a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with a towel and let rise in warm area for about 45 minutes. (I use my microwave as a proofing box by placing 1 cup of boiling water in the back corner of the microwave and keeping the door closed. Don’t turn the microwave on while the dough is rising!)

3. Turn the dough out onto floured board and cut the dough in half, to make 2 pizzas. (You can also cut the dough into 6 pieces, to make personal pizzas.) Flour each piece of dough. Begin pre-heating your oven to 450 ̊F.

4. If you're making your pizza on a baking sheet or cold pizza stone, dust the sheet/stone with cornmeal and place the dough on top to shape. If you're going to be baking your pizza on a hot stone, put the stone in the oven and continue shaping. (If you use a pizza peel, shape your dough on that, making sure it is floured well so that the pizza will slide off into the oven.) For each piece of douh, flatten into a disk, then use your fingertips to press the dough out until it's about 1/4" thick.

5. Place one hand, palm side down, in the center of the dough. Use your other hand to stretch the dough outward. Repeat by stretching around the diameter of the dough, until it is the size you'd like. (12" for a large pizza).

6. Top with sauce, then a bed of mozzarella cheese, your choice of toppings, some Parmesan cheese on top and lastly, a dusting of ground oregano.

7. Make sure oven is preheated to 450 ̇F. (If using a pizza stone, have the stone in the oven while it is preheating.) Place your pizza in the oven and bake until browned and bubbly (Large pizza - 12 minutes, Mini pizza - 7 to 8 minutes).

To Make Sauce: (I do this while the dough is rising.) In a saucepan over medium heat, add the olive oil and garlic. Once garlic begins to cook, add the tomatoes, herbs and salt. Let the sauce simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Additional Topping Ideas:

  • Hawaiian Pizza (ham & pineapple)
  • Corn & Basil
  • Pizza Margherita (sauce, sliced fresh mozzarella cheese and basil leaves
  • California Pizza (sun-dried tomatoes, grilled chicken, artichoke heart and green onion)
  • Greek Pizza (Kalamata olives, roasted red bell peppers, red onion, sun-dried tomato, feta cheese and fresh spinach)

To Pre-Bake Pizza Crust: Form crust as above. Bake in pre-heated 450 ̊F oven, but for only 7 minutes. Let the crust cool completely. If using later that day, cover with a towel on the counter. These crusts can also be frozen, but place in a zip bag before freezing.

Download pdf recipe for: Pizza