Monday, July 18, 2011

pizza dough [Matt]

margherita pizza w/ tomato, fresh mozzarella, basil
pizza may be the greatest food every created. its only limitation - a lack of creativity that the cook may have when topping the pie. i've been obsessed with pizza since i can remember and have been cooking it for years now. below is my recipe for crust and a few ideas for how you can top it.

dough - part 1
- 1 cup warm water in a tall glass (needs room for yeast to rise)
- 1/2 tablespoon sugar, add to water.
- 2 packets of yeast, add to water and stir mixture. place in a warm place for 10 minutes to let the yeast rise. successful yeast looks like a foamy (tan) beer. if you don't see foam, start over. your yeast is bad and won't rise.

dough - part 2
- in a large mixing bowl, pour in the yeast mixture
- add 2 pinches of salt
- add 1 1/2 cups flour. begin mixing by hand. add more flour so the mixture will begin to clump. once dough is able to be formed into a single large ball, without it constantly sticking to your hands, then it is ready. continue kneading the dough for another 3 minutes.
- place the dough in a clean mixing bowl that has been lightly oiled. place a dish towel over the top of the bowl and put in a warm area (a gas oven pilot light works great). let dough rise for 20 minutes.

remove the dough and preheat oven to 475f.

dough - part 3
- punch down the dough.
- flour a countertop and a rolling pin. roughly shape the dough into a thick version of a pizza shape.
- place the dough on the floured countertop. roll the dough out to the desired crust density. the dough will rise slightly, so go a bit thinner than you'd think.
- move the rolled out pizza crust to a lightly oiled pizza stone. if you don't have one, go get one. they're only $30 and it will change your life.
- add your base layer of toppings (tomatoes, cheese, etc.)

white pizza w/ ricotta, roasted eggplant, fennel, parmesan reggiano
place the pizza in the hot oven. depending on how good your oven is, the pizza can take 10 - 20 minutes cooking at 475f. keep an eye on it. you want the crust to be a deep golden brown. once the pizza has reached maximum sexiness, remove the whole pizza stone from the oven. this will help the crust continue to crisp as you add the rest of the toppings that should be added after cooking so that the do not wilt or cook.

((((cook track)))) Zeph And Azeem - Everything's Different

proscuitto di parma, pears, fresh mozzarella, pomegranate-infused balsamic vinegar reduction

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