Feb 2011
Pizza Dough

Pizza is by far one of my most favorite meals – isn’t it everyones? In college, my sister worked at a pizzeria, and she would sell me balls of pizza dough for $1 a piece.  It became a weekly tradition to have homemade pizza every Friday night. Well, she has since stopped working at the pizzeria, which left me to find a great pizza dough recipe. I have tried quite a few dough recipes, but this one from Cook’s Illustrated definitely takes the cake. Its simple to make by hand, and even easier to make it you have a stand mixer. The dough itself is easy to work with, and makes a nice pizza with a chewy crust. I always have a ball of dough in my freezer to have on hand for a quick dinner.

Pizza Dough
Yields: Enough dough to make 1 large or 2 medium pizzas

Ingredients:
½ cup warm water (about 110°)
1 envelope (2 ¼ tsp.) instant yeast
1 ¼ cups water, at room temperature
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
4 cups bread flour, plus (about 1/3 cup) more for dusting and as needed
1 ½ tsp. salt
olive oil or non-stick cooking spray for greasing the bowl

Directions:
Measure the warm water into a 2-cup liquid measuring cup. Sprinkle in the yeast and let stand until the yeast dissolves and swells, about 5 minutes.

Place the flour and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer* fitted with the paddle attachment. Briefly combine the dry ingredients at low-speed.

Add the room temperature water and oil to the yeast water and stir to combine.

Slowly add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and continue to mix at low-speed until a cohesive mass forms. Stop the mixer and replace the paddle with the dough hook. Knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 5-8 minutes. Using non-stick cooking spray, spray the inside of a large bowl.

After 5-8 minutes in the mixer, get ready to remove the dough. Your dough should be a little sticky and springy. If it is too sticky and messy add more flour and mix to combine ingredients.

Once the dough is the right consistency, shape it into a ball and put it in the oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise for about 1 ½ to 2 hours. The dough should double in size. At this point, you’ll want to punch down the dough to deflate it.

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and knead it slightly. Divide the dough in half. If you are using right away, cover it with plastic and let it rest for 10-20 minutes.

*I’ve included the directions for a stand mixer, but if you don’t have a stand mixer (or your beautiful red KitchenAid mixer is in your mom’s closet, waiting for your bridal shower), you can simply knead the dough by hand.

*Freezer-Friendly Tip* – Wrap leftover dough twice in plastic wrap, then place in a zip-lock freezer bag and place in the freezer. To defrost, simply leave it in the refrigerator overnight or out on the counter for a few hours before use.

Source – Cook’s Illustrated

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This entry was posted in Bread, Freezer Friendly, Italian, Main Dish, Pizza. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Pizza Dough

  1. Dulce Dough says:

    I have been looking for a good pizza dough recipe! Thanks for sharing! I am going to try this one out!

  2. Liz says:

    Yum! I love to make homemade pizza…will need to try your dough recipe next :)

  3. tiffany says:

    I always get my dough from Trader Joe’s … I should totally make it though! Now, I have a great recipe! :D

  4. Mary says:

    Does the yeast need a bit of sugar to bloom?

  5. Jen says:

    Whats the difference between bread flour and all pourpose? Does it have to be bread flour? Can I use wheat? Thx!

    • Chrissy says:

      Bread flour tends to give the crust a chewier texture. You can certainly use all-purpose (and I have before when I’ve been out of bread flour), the crust just might be softer. I haven’t tried this recipe with wheat flour, but generally when adding wheat flour to a recipe I recommended trying it with half wheat/half white flour first. If you try it, let me know! :)

      • Jen says:

        Made both 50% wheat/ 50% AP and 50% wheat/ 50% bread….the bread flour was definitely better, as you indicated. I like wheat bread much better than white, in general, and found the wheat to be great as pizza crust too. I still need to perfect my stretching/ rolling technique as I found my crust over-rose…likely I left it too thick. Also, I discovered pizza yeast…this made a much denser crust which I really liked! Next I’m going to try it with cake flour, I think. I am hoping for a lighter, softer crust than what I’ve been getting and hope it will do the trick. Thanks for your help!

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