Home-made pizza that's crispy on the bottom & chewy in the middle

By • November 20, 2011 0 Comments

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Author Notes: I found this basic pizza recipe in the NY Times ( May 19, 2010 by Oliver Strand) last winter & it has changed my quest for great pizza at home! I've been practicing my pizza for a few years now, and have gathered some great tips from fellow cooks along the way, but this recipe has made me feel that I have arrived. First, I am fortunate enough to have a 1950's O'keefe & Merritt gas stove which reaches almost 700 degrees if pre-heated properly. Secondly, I have found that it makes a HUGE difference if you thoroughly pre-heat your oven, I pre-heat my oven for a full hour with my pizza stone inside. The key to getting that special consistency (besides the dough recipe) is for the pizza to cook very quickly (in under 10 minutes). This dough also freezes wonderfully, so you can make a double batch of dough, and then have it ready for pizza nights to come over the next month. This recipe uses less yeast and a longer rise time, which promotes the elasticity of the crust. I alternate making a cooked tomato sauce with garden herbs, and a raw sauce, depending on my mood.Mrs. Darling

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Makes 4-5 pizzas

The dough

  • 4 cups High protein flour
  • 3 teaspoons Sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon instant yeast

Raw tomato sauce

  • 28 ounces Can whole pealed tomatoes
  • 1 Clove Garlic
  • 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  1. The Dough: Combine flours, salt & yeast in mixing bowl. Add 2 cups room temperature water & mix at low speed with dough hook until dough binds. Let rest for 10 minutes. Kneed again on low setting until dough forms smooth ball. Turn onto floured surface & kneed into ball. Cut Dough into 4 qty. 6-8 ounce pieces. Kneed each piece into smooth ball, place in bowl or container with lid, and place in refrigerate or keep containers outside for 24-72 hours before using.
  2. The Sauce: Combine ingredients in blender. Blend until smooth. Store in refrigerator until ready to use.
  3. When you are ready to bake pizzas, pre-heat oven for a full hour at full heat, with pizza stone inside. Turn dough portion onto floured board, kneed in to smooth ball. Flatten the ball with palm of your hand, pushing towards edges. If you can toss your dough do so, otherwise form with hands or rolling pin into a 10" pie. Ladle on about a coup of sauce, and spread evenly to edges. Spread sliced fresh mozzarella on pie, and add sprigs of fresh basil if you like.
  4. Using a pizza peal, move uncooked pie from counter to stone (in oven). Let cook 6-10 minutes depending on the heat of your oven can achieve, until cheese is bubbling, and crust is crispy on bottom.

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