I love pizza, but making it at home has always been challenging. I've tried dozens of dough recipes, most of which have resulted in failure. Other than this recipe, the only one I've had turn out well was a recipe for New York style dough from Peter Reinhart's book, American Pie: My Search for the Perfect Pizza
. It was good, but it was a lot of work.
The main problem is I've never owned an oven hot enough to get the dough to cook right. The NY style pizza, for example, required me running my oven at 500 for an hour (with a pizza stone of course) then running the broiler for another half an hour to try to raise the temperature.
Recently, I discovered this recipe
for New England Greek Style Pizza from Serious Eats. Now, by all accounts, Greek style pizza is pretty bad, generally speaking. I've only had one encounter with it at a crappy "house of pizza" type place in or near Boxborough, MA, and this recipe produces a far superior pizza.
Oh, and this is a no knead dough, too.
On to the porn and instructions:For the dough:
* Bread flour. This is vital. The higher protein content gets you a nice, chewy interior.
* Kosher salt
* Yeast (instant or active dry works)
* Extra virgin olive oilFor the pan:
* Vegetable shortening (aka, Crisco)
* Olive oilFor the toppings:
* Whatever you wantMaking the dough:
We're going to go by weight for the flour. Measuring flour by weight is inherently more accurate since flour can settle during shipment and everyone scoops differently.
Start by putting a large bowl on your scale and taring it:
We want 14oz of bread flour:
Yeast. 0.15oz, or 1/2 teaspoon:
Kosher salt. 0.30oz, or 1 tablespoon:
Stop here. Whisk together all the try ingredients until well mixed.
Extra virgin olive oil. 2 tablespoons:
Water. 9oz. If your tap water has a lot of chlorine, use bottled or filtered. By the way, one fluid ounce of water weights one ounce. Nifty, eh?
Stir everything with a wooden or plastic spoon until it comes together. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl:
Cover with plastic wrap and stash in a warm place for 8-24 hours. My house is cold, so I gave the yeast a jump start by putting it in a warm oven (about 85-90 degrees):
BEFORE YOU CONTINUE, PLEASE SEE THIS NOTE: LINK
19 hours for me...
Dust your workspace with flour:
Turn your dough out onto your workspace:
Lightly oil two bowls. Pour some olive oil in the bowls then wipe it around with a paper towel. Half your dough, form into two balls, place in bowls, roll around to cover in oil then cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 30-60 minutes:
Put your oven rack as low as you can. If you have a pizza stone, put it on the bottom rack. Preheat your oven to 500.
Again, flour your workspace:
Try your damndest to stretch the dough into a circle the same diameter as your baking vessel:
Choose your baking vessel. If you have a pizza pan, good on you. If not, or if you're a cool kid, just use a cast iron skillet:
Take 1 tablespoon of shortening, and rub down your pan with it:
Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the pan and swirl it around:
Drop your dough in the pan and try to stretch it out to the edges:
Let it rest for a few minutes then try again:
Let the dough rise in the pan for another 30-60 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare your toppings:
After the dough is done rising, top it as desired:
My wife's not a big fan of tomato sauce on pizza, so it turns out I'm not a big fan of sauce on pizza, either.
Throw the topped dough in the oven:
It should take 15-20 minutes for the pizza to cook. Pull it out when the crust is golden brown and the cheese is melted and brown in spots:
Use a metal spatula to lift up the edge of the pizza and see if the bottom is brown enough:
Not done enough? Throw your pan on a burner and crank it up to medium-high heat until it is done enough:
Place on cutting board and let rest for 2-3 minutes:
Slice and serve:
Post mortem shot: