Saturday, September 06, 2008

Dough for Two Pizzas

When the weather turns cold and it makes more sense to turn on the oven, we make homemade pizza at least once a week. I'd throw a few dough ingredients into Ye Olde Bread Machine and then take it from there.

Sad fact: the old bread machine is dying. Yes, it's true. The temperature isn't as regulated as it used to be, things aren't rising as they should. After all, it is almost ten years old.

I had to find another dough solution. There were two very important criteria: (1) ready to use in less than half an hour and (2) makes more than one crust.

Here's what worked, I found the recipe here; the beauty of this recipe is that you can prebake the crusts and freeze!

4 cups flour (white or whole-wheat)
1 T honey
3 tsp yeast
2 tsp sea salt
1/4 c oil (olive or canola work best)
1-1/3 c warm water (slightly warmer than room temperature)

Combine the dry ingredients, then add oil and water. Knead this mixture for about 3-4 minutes. The dough will be soft and smooth. Let this rest in a bowl for about 20 minutes or so. It will rise slightly.

At this point, divide the dough in half and follow either (A) or (B) below. Mini-pizza crusts are possible, too!

(A) If you are using the dough right away, go ahead and roll out....add toppings...and bake 15-20 minutes at 350 degrees. I like to roll the dough in some cornmeal for texture, and it helps to keep the dough from sticking to the stone or pan.

(B) If you would like to freeze the dough, roll out and pre-bake about 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees. Let cool completely, then package (plastic wrap, then aluminum foil; ziploc bags would work for smaller crusts) and freeze until ready to use.

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