Basic Pizza Dough

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Homemade pizza is a fairly regular dinner at our house.  I make a big batch of dough and prepare a bunch of toppings and then let everyone make their own.  Commercial pizza ovens are significantly hotter than most home ovens, but you can easily make pizza dough at least as good as what you’ll find in a restaurant.  If you can find Tipo 00 flour (or order it online), you should do so.  If you can’t find it, this will still be excellent with bread flour or all-purpose flour.

  • 1 2/3 cups warm water
  • ½ tsp active dry yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 4 cups Tipo 00 flour
  • 4 tsp salt

Combine water, yeast, and sugar in the bowl of a standing mixer witted with the dough hook.  Allow to sit until it becomes foamy.  Add the salt and 1 cup of the flour.  Turn the mixer to low speed and mix until it is thoroughly combined.  Add the remaining flour – ¼ cup or so at a time – allowing each addition to become fully incorporated before adding the next.  When the dough has formed a ball (and the sides of the bowl are clean), turn the speed to medium and knead for about 5 minutes.  Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl and cover.  Allow to rise until at least doubled – about 2 hours.

Punch down the dough and knead by hand a couple of times.  Divide into four equal pieces.  For each piece into a tight ball.  Lightly dust each ball with flour and cover.  Allow to rest for a minimum of one hour.  (Alternatively, you can move the dough to the refrigerator for up to 24 hours prior to resting.  If you do so, allow to rest at room temperature for at least an hour before you continue.)

Preheat your oven to the maximum temperature it can reach (probably between 500 and 550).  You can use a pizza stone, a pizza pan, or just a baking sheet.  Pat one of the rounds into a disk.  Use your fingertips to gently stretch the disk into the desired shape and thickness, being sure to leave a ridge around the edge.  Add some sauce and toppings (but not too many) and transfer to the oven.  Bake for 8 – 12 minutes, until crust is browned and toppings are hot.


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