Making the Perfect Pizza at Home: Pizza Recipe

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Pizza Recipe

I recently had a wonderful email exchange with Dr. K, an avid home cook, supporter of local foods, and Scordo.com reader.  Dr. K was moved by our article on cracked Calabrian olive saladbecause of the suggestion that making food with others is truly a special, and uniquely human, activity.  I couldn’t agree more with him and in turn wanted to share some recent photos of our pizza making session at home (I swear my family is in the background helping with the preparation!).You can find both our pizza dough recipe and pizza making process below.  If you’re looking for a quick pizza to make at home try our lavash pizza recipe (which doesn’t require you make dough).

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup of warm water
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 3 cups of all-purpose (or unbleached) flour (you can also try Molino Caputo Tipo 00 Pizza Flour, imported from Naples, Italy)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • Recipe for homemade pizza sauce
  • 2 cups of fresh basil
Process:
Mix the “wet ingredients”, including the water and olive oil with the dry yeast (you’re looking to dissolve the yeast).  Thereafter thoroughly mix the remaining dry ingredients and combine with the wet ingredients.  Place the mixture in a Kitchen Aid and mix for 2-3 minutes.  Remove the dough and knead with your hands for 4-5 minutes; you’re looking for a fluffy/not too dense dough.  Remember to make sure your workspace has plenty of flour so the dough does not stick when kneading.  Form the dough into a ball and coat the exterior with a bit of olive oil and place in a large bowl, covering the bowl with a kitchen towel.  The dough should sit (I like to place the bowl in my oven, with no heat of course) for 30-45 minutes or until it doubles in size.
Next, add a tablespoon of olive oil to a 10 by 15 inch cookie sheet and thoroughly coat the bottom with the oil. Take your dough and cut it in half and stretch the dough on your cookie sheet.  Add a bit more olive to the dough and spread it with your hands.  You’re now ready add your toppings!
My favorite type of pizza is the “Pizza Margherita” which is comprised of tomato sauce (here’s our pizza sauce recipe), fresh mozzarella (try to avoid supermarket mozzarella), and fresh basil.  Start with the sauce and then add the mozzarella (you can cut the cheese into small thin pieces).
Preheat your over to 400 degrees F. and bake your pizza for 20-25 minutes depending on how thin or thick your dough is.  Once you’re ready to remove the pizza lift one side of the dough and make sure you’ve got a nice brown color (the cheese should be bubbling as well).  After removing the pizza, add the hand shredded basil and a bit of extra virgin olive oil.  If you have some Parmigiano-Reggiano you could also grate a bit and add it to the pizza!
Some of my favorite toppings include:
  • Sautéed red onions, black pepper, and Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • Sautéed mushrooms and Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • Dried rosemary, seal salt, red pepper flakes, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and extra olive oil

(photo: use great flour and you’ll make great pizza, Caputo 00 Flour is nice!)

(photo: yeast is active and ready to go!)

(photo: you can knead by hand or in a machine)

(photo: before rising)

(photo: after the first rise)

(photo: fresh whole milk mozzarella)

(photo: working the dough into the baking pan)

(photo: lots of tomato sauce on this one)

 (photo: close up of melted cheese on homemade pizza dough)
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  • Barbie with a T

    My husband and I like to make pecan pancake or waffles for breakfast, I mix and he cooks them. Or we like to cook together when we have Chinese stir fry. I do the prep and he does the stir frying. On “fry night” we like to fry eggplant, mushrooms, oysters or shrimp, etc. and we eat as we go along, and there is never anything left over!

  • Scicchi

    Great pizza pics, Vince!
    My two boys(8 and 5) enjoy helping me make about anything. Homemade pizza, homemade pasta, our homemade “soupie”(supressata-which will be coming up in two weeks), and especially pancakes :)
    They also help me in our garden, mostly picking the tomatoes and basil leaves.
    There are times when I just want to get whatever I’m doing done, but knowing you are making memories for both you AND them that will last forever keeps things fun.
    My wife enjoys staying as far away from the kitchen as possible, and that is fine with me :)

  • Simon

    My dad has recently bought an outdoor oven for baking pizzas which has been a real hit. He loves making pizzas or cooking meats with it. The wood smoke flavor adds a lot to the meal and it is fun to be cooking outdoors as well. Great post!

  • http://www.acookblog.com Peter

    There’s nothing better than homemade 00 pizza crust. Have you ever thrown these on the grill? It approximates that forno a legna flavor and makes for a fun BBQ party.

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