I made pizza tonight. Ever since The Mrs. bought me a pizza stone I have been experimenting with breads, pizza and fococcia to name a few things. I used to let my Bread Man 3 million make the dough for me, but decided a few days ago to try my hand at making the dough on my own. I put the dough hook into my beloved Kitchen Aid mixer, bodged together a dough recipie and let fly. The results were delicious. I remember My Man Alton had said something about letting the dough rest in the 'fridge over night. I put a chunk of my dough in the fridge and baked it off the next day. It was twice as good as the day before. I had made a white pizza because I was out of tomato sauce, but it was good enough to share with a co-worker or two, both of whom confirmed my (clearly unbiased) opinion that I had "done good".
Last night I put together a batch of my dough, let it sit over night and cooked it today. The difference is marked. The overnight crust has a great balance of chewy, light and crisp. Part of the overall effect is the oven and the stone, but I am convinced that the dough has to be right to take full advantage of all the parts that make up a good pizza.
I also subscribe (now) to the "less is more" theory of pizza making/eating. Two toppings at the most is my new motto. Of course I am making smaller pizza's so I can make two or three, each with it's own topping and be happy.
3 cups AP flour (or 2 cups AP one cup Whole Wheat)
3-6 Tablespoons of olive oil
One Packet of Yeast bloomed in one cup of warm water
Two Tablespoons Sugar
One teaspoon salt.
I put the dry (Flour, sugar and salt) in the bowl of my stand mixer and sift with dough hook.
Then you add the oil, starting with 3 Tbs. Turn the mixer on to medium and wait until the oil incorporates with the flour. (you may need to push the flour down the sides of the bowl) add oil untill you get a good slightly lumpy but dry flour.
I add the bloomed yeast and warm water in two stages.
I turn the mixer on to low (be sure to lock the head down once the dough comes together) and add up to another half cup of warm water untill the dough forms and is kneaded by the dough hook.
I let the mixer run for about 7-10 more minutes then take the dough out of the bowl and form it into a "jellyfish" and put it in a bowl (glass or aluminum are what I use) that has been sprayed with olive oil. I cover the dough with wax paper and cover the bowl with a wet tea towel and put in my fridge overnight. I punch the dough down in the morning, re-cover and use when I get home.
If you have a mixer, or some time on your hands and want a good workout, I suggest you try making your own dough. I never would have a year ago, but now that I have I don't see going back any time soon. It is dead easy, cheap as chips, and gosh-darn tasty.
So there you have it Gentle Reader, Pizza is served.