This Pizza Dough recipe will be just what you need to make my sausage bread.
I didn’t learn how good pizza dough was until I moved to NY as an adult. I grew up in the northwest, the first pizza parlor opened up in the town where I lived when I was in college. We made pizza as kids – a piece of toast with condensed tomato soup and a slice of American cheese. Pop it under the broiler to melt the cheese. Wa-La-Pizza!!! Now that is so NOT pizza!
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Over the years, I tried to make pizza dough with varying degrees of success. I was never able to get it quite right until I took an online pizza dough class from Peter Rheinhart. I learned a SIS (simple is smart) technique for making pizza dough that gets my pizza’s so close to a NY deli pizza that I am happy with the result. If you are interested in learning more about Peter Rheinhart and his techniques for creating wonderful breads check out his book.
What makes that NY style pizza so special?
The pizza dough crust – for starters!!! It has to be crispy on the bottom. The outside edges of the crust (the part without sauce or toppings) should be soft, moist, but chewy. MMM I’m getting hungry for pizza!
So what’s the secret to creating a crispy pizza crust?
Cooking the pizza on a steel – that’s right a steel – is important to that perfect crust. Why a steel? The steel heats up quickly and cooks the pizza about 30% faster. The faster a pizza cooks, the crispier the crust will be. I put the pizza steel on a pizza stone because the stone retains the heat of the oven better, which lets me to bake multiple pizzas in a row without having to wait for the steel to heat back up. Important in my family as everyone loves to create a custom pizza. I put out bowls with every imaginable topping, stretch the dough into a personal pizza shape and add the sauce. Everyone then gets busy creating a personal pizza with only the topping they love to eat.
How can I make sure my pizza dough isn’t tough and dry?
Using the correct amount of flour is also crucial in creating that delicious crust. When I bake I scale or weigh the flour. The right amount of flour in baked goods is essential for creating the texture you desire. If your baked goods are dry, try weighing the flour. One cup of flour should weigh 4 1/4 ounces. Scoop a cup of flour and then weight it. You may be surprised at how much you are over the 4 1/4 ounces.
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- oven stone and oven steel
- 5 cups flour use unbleached organic bread flour
- 2 tsp salt sea salt or kosher salt
- 1 tsp instant yeast
- 2 tsp sugar
- 16 oz water room temperature
- 1 tbsp olive oil for work surface
- To change the number of serving: hover the mouse over the number of servings, a slider will pop up. The slider can be adjusted up or down. This will automatically recalculate and adjust the amount of each ingredient for you.
- This recipe makes 2 large 14-inch pizzas.
- Add all the dry ingredients to a mixing bowl and stir to mix.
- Add the water and stir with a large wooden spoon until all the flour is absorbed.
- Let the dough rest for 5 minutes and then stir for another minute. The dough should be soft and slightly sticky. Add more flour or water a little bit at a time to achieve this consistancy.
- Add 1 Tbsp olive oil to a smooth work surface. (i.e. granite) to create an oil circle about 12 inches across.
- Stretch and fold the dough as shown in the video. Cover with a bowl and let it rest for 5 minutes. (Peter Rheinharts technique)
- Repeat the stretch and folds 3 more times at 5-minute intervals. Add more oil to the work surface if the dough starts to stick. The dough becomes firmer and less sticky with each stretch and fold.
- After the final stretch and fold put the dough into a gallon ziplock bag sprayed with a nonstick coating and place in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- Or you can put the dough back in the bowl and let it rise until double in size, about 1 hour. Then use the dough for your favorite pizza recipe, sausage bread, stromboli, or calzones. Also delicious for garlic knots and garlic breadsticks.