Making pizza dough from scratch
The recipe I am listing below is a recipe for making pizza dough from scratch. it’s taken from the book by Marcella Hazan. Obviously top your pizza with whatever strikes your fancy!
How to make pizza dough
Let me start by making a confession; I am not a big pizza fan…. Maybe I should be reconsidering that, since my studio is actually located above the infamous New York Pizza chain!! 🙂 It also tends to be the first thing that people ask me when they first come to the studio; if I eat a lot of pizza… ?
Well, the answer would be no. NYP is only open from 4 pm anyway and I tend to be gone by then, so they wouldn’t be able to serve me pizza even if I wanted them to!
Pizza or no pizza?
But in general I have always thought of pizza as a second rate Italian meal. I mean; if you can have gorgeous pasta, delicious meat, fish or whatever other dishes, why settle for something as basic as pizza?? I don’t know… we sometimes order pizza, but the ones you tend to get are greasy, too thick or too thin, not cruncy and in general not really very good. Tom loves them, so we do order pizza sometimes, but then I order pasta carbonara… which is actually also horrible, but you know sometimes convenience wins from culinary delights… 🙂
Homemade pizza dough
However; once I discovered the delights of homemade pizza dough I had to reconsider my love/hate relationship with pizza. My track record with dough is not too good. I just tend to be too impatient to wait for the dough to be properly kneaded but I started making the pizza dough with the Kitchen Aid. And finished by hand. Surprisingly enough the dough was rising just fine and the end result was totally delicious. This recipe make a total of two 30 cm pizza’s.
If you want to make a perfect pizza it is worth investing in a pizza stone. I previously had one bought from Jamie Oliver and it’s not too big and clunky to keep and works a treat. Ideally you would also need a pizza paddle. But when you don’t have that, try and use a baking tray or similar flat surface to transfer the pizza to the hot pizza stone.
For the best results you will need to heat the pizza stone in advance in the oven. To make the transferring easier use plenty of semolina under the pizza dough so it will slide easily from the baking tray onto the baking stone.
Alternatively you could make mini pizza’s as those are so much easier to handle. And probably just as delicious.
The pizza ended up having a delicious thin and crispy crust and I loved it. So the key to loving pizza I now learned is making your own pizza dough. Follow the recipe from Marcella Hazan below and you can’t really go wrong!
Check out these pizza recipes as well:
Basic pizza dough
- 1,5 tsp active dry yeast
- 250 ml lukewarm water
- 375 gr plain unbleached flour
- extra virgin olive oil 1 tbsp for the dough, 1 tsp for the bowl and some for the finished pizza
- 0.5 tsp salt
- a baking stone
- a bakers peel paddle
- semolina flour
- Put the yeast into a large bowl and dissolve it completely with about a quarter of the lukewarm water. When dissolved, add one third of the flour and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon. Then as you continue to stir, gradually add 1 tbsp of olive oil, the salt, another quarter of the lukewarm water and another third of the flour. When putting in flour and water for the last time, hold back some of both and put in as much of either as you need to make the dough manageable soft, but not too sticky.
- Take the dough out of the bowl and slap it down very hard against the work counter several times (great stress reliever… 🙂 ), until it is stretched out to a length of about 25 cm. Reach for the far end of the dough, fold it a short distance towards you, push it away with the heel of your palm, flexing your wrist, fold it and push it away again, gradually rolling it up and bringing it close to you. Rotate the dough a one-quarter turn, pick it up and slap it down hard, repeating the entire previous operation. Basically you want to end up with a soft and pliable dough. Shape it into a round ball.
- Grease the inside of a clean bowl with olive oil and place the dough inside. Cover with clingfilm and put the bowl somewhere quiet and warm so it can rise in peace for about 3 hours. Longer is fine too.
- At least 30 minutes before you are ready to pop the pizza into the oven preheat the oven to 230 C/450F. Sprinkle the baker’s peel generously with cornmeal. Take the risen dough out of the bowl and divide in half. Unless you can put two pizza’s at one time in your oven, put the other half back in the bowl and cover again until you are ready to use that part.
- Flatten the dough as thin as you can opening it out into a circular shape using a rolling pin but finishing with your fingers. Leave the rim somewhat higher then the rest.
- When it is the desired shape, put the circle of dough on the – with cornmeal covered – baker’s peel.
- Put the topping of your choice on the dough and slide it, jerking the peel sharply away, on to the preheated baking stone. Bake for 20 minutes or slightly more. until the dough becomes coloured a light golden brown. As soon as it’s done drizzle with a little but of olive oil and serve.
The nutritional values above are calculated per portion. The details are based on standard nutritional tables and do not constitute a professional nutritional advice.