Friday, February 27, 2009

Homemade Pizza Dough

This is a recipe my mom has been using for 10+ years, and it always turns out. It is, in my opinion, very easy and can be made ahead and refrigerated or even frozen. One recipe of the dough makes 2 medium size pizzas, or 3 individual pizzas.

Homemade Pizza Dough
1 package rapid rise yeast
1/2 cup warm water
2 Tbsp. sugar
3 cups flour
3 Tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. salt (I like to add more)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
*1/2 cup water (you can add this if needed)

Pour 1/2 cup of warm water in measuring cup. Add yeast packet and sugar.
Stir and set aside. It needs a good 5 minutes to activate the yeast, and start foaming.
Meanwhile, add flour, parmesan, and salt to mixing bowl and make sure you
have your dough hook attachment on there.
When yeast is foaming, add to the flour mixture. Add olive oil as well.
This is the only thing you need to be sure of to get the dough to come out right. KEEP MIXING!! I used to just mix for a minute or so and be so upset, because my dough wasn't together. Well, no!! It needs a few minutes for the dough to come together, not 45 seconds...
As you can see, the dough has come together. See? All you needed was a little patience. It happened on accident for me. I kept it mixing while I was getting the bowl ready for the next step, and came back to the mixing bowl to see that it had finally come together!!! I had an a-ha moment. A-ha! I have to leave the dough alone, and it will come together.
Take the dough out and put in an aluminum bowl that you have greased with olive oil. Wet a towel with warm water and place over the bowl. Set in a warm place (I take it to my laundry room) and let rise (for at least an hour).The dough has risen (compare with picture above).
Set it on a floured surface and cut into 2 or 3 sections. You can wrap and refrigerate each section and it will rise more in the refrigerator. However, you can also roll out the dough without that and it will be fine. I roll mine with a roller, but I also stretch it over my hands, and pull it to really get it stretched out.
Bake at 375 for about 10 minutes. I use my simple tomato sauce as the pizza sauce, and then add cheese and whatever ingredients we want that night. When my sister makes this dough, she adds dried herbs to the flour to make an herbed dough. It's really good!! I also brush olive oil on the crust. It gets rid of the dry, flour-y taste and gives a pretty color, too.


Anonymous said...

So, this is probably a silly question, but I have never made pizza at home before (though your post inspires me). Do you cook the dough for 10 minutes and then you put the toppings on it and bake it additional time? (And for how long?) Or do you put the ingredients on the uncooked dough? Also, do you brush the oil on it before baking? Under the sauce? What herbs does your sister use? Finally, where in the store would I find yeast packets? Would Walmart have them? Sorry for all the questions! I love the blog and have so enjoyed your recipes--love the pix. Thanks for answering my Q about the onions in the baked beans in the next post.

icook said...

Love all the questions, and sorry I was not more specific in my post. I didn't take pictures of preparing the pizzas and baking them, because I was making them for my babysitter and kids, so I wasn't there when they were baked- date night for me and my husband!!!
- After rolling out the dough, I spread the sauce on. Then, whatever isn't covered by sauce, I brush with olive oil. Then I cover with cheese and toppings. I sprinkle dried basil and oregano on top of that, and bake for 10 minutes.
- My sister uses basil and oregano (dried) to mix in the dough and it really does give it a nice flavor.
- The yeast packets are found on the baking aisle, usually at the top by the baking powder. Yes, Walmart will have them.
Let me know how it turns out!!!

Anonymous said...

well, it was a disaster. I got yeast that was "quick rise" half the time. The first time, it didn't fizz at all. So I tried it again, but then my dough never came together. I mixed it for 15 minutes and it was still in small pellet form. I had to just throw it out. I think I should step away from baking. This was my first attempt--you made it seem do-able, but apparently it isn't for me. Back to premade crusts.

icook said...

OH NO!!!! I'm so sorry it didn't turn out. It took me a while (read:years) before mine would come together like I expected it to.
Was the water warm for the yeast?