Pizza is a continuum of sane to crazy. On the sane side, you find a good pizza joint and order. As you head down the crazy path you start making more and more of the component parts yourself. I haven’t yet started curing meats or making cheese in my kitchen, but that’s probably next. I usually make my own sauce, and I’ll add that in the future, but dough is the most important part of a pizza, so I’ll stat there.
I’ve tried a bunch of different dough recipes, and this is my take. It pulls together different ingredients and techniques from my favorites into one that works best for me. It takes time, but can be used the same day (some recipes proof in the fridge for up to a week), is pretty easy to work with, and tastes great. All ingredients are measured in grams, and while this is more precise than some of my other recipes, you can still go over/under on any and come out fine. These amounts will get you enough dough for 5 dough balls, each which will make about a 12-14 inch pizza. You can divide the recipe to make less, or better- make more and freeze what you don’t use, it keeps really well. Just toss a frozen ball in the fridge the night before you want to use it, and move to the counter a couple hours before pizza time to let it defrost and warm up.
- 500 g. All Purpose Flour
- 500 g. Bread Flour
- 700 g. Warm water
- 24 g. Salt
- 3 g. Instant dried yeast
- Olive oil
- Autolyse- Combine flours and water in a large bowl until it’s mixed, then let it rest for 20-30 minutes.
- Mix- Sprinkle salt and yeast over the dough and mix to combine. I like the pincer method. Let it rest for another 20 minutes or so.
- Stretch- wet your hand and scoop your fingers under the dough. Get a good pinch then stretch that side of the ball up as far as it will go without ripping, and pull it across the dough to the opposite side. Repeat this about 5 times moving in a circle around the dough, until it no longer stretches easily. Then wet both hands, lift the dough up from the bowl, flip, and drop it back down.
- Let it rest for another 20-30 minutes, then stretch it a second time.
- Wait another 20-30 minutes, then pour some olive oil over the top of the dough. Use your hands to spread it around so it covers the dough ball on all sides, and the bottom and walls of the bowl. Cover, and let the dough rest for 6 hours.
- After 6 hours, flour a surface, and plop the dough out. Flour your hands, and pull the dough into a roughly even shape. Cut the dough into 5 equal parts, then gently shape the pieces into moderately tight balls, don’t punch out the air. Give each ball some space since they’ll continue to rise, and loosely cover the balls with a clean towel. Let them rest another hour, then you’re ready to toss, shape and bake.