Recipe by MTDavids
I make pizza frequently for family and friends. I have tried dozens of dough recipes, but keep returning to this no-fail favorite. It is a compilation of ideas from different sources and has evolved into our favorite dough. When making dough, I have found technique is often as important as the ingredients, so I tried to be as specific as I could with directions. I use my hands instead of our bread machine or stand up mixer because I can get "the feel" of properly mixed dough. The amount of flour varies with relative humidity and altitude, so developing a feel for the dough when kneading takes some practice. The kneading is also a great stress reducer for those days when you feel like kicking something (one reason this is my dog's favorite recipe). When you get this dough down, delivery/take out is history. NOTE: Do not use tap water. The chlorine inhibits the yeast from doing it's job.
- 6 cups all-purpose flour
- 1⁄4 ounce fast rising yeast (I like Fleischmann's rapid rise)
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons salt
- 2 cups water
- 1⁄4 cup olive oil
- 1⁄2 cup fresh parmesan cheese, finely grated (not the green stuff, please)
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- olive oil, as required
- cornmeal, as required
Directions See How It's Made
- In a large bowl, combine 4 cups of flour, undissolved yeast, sugar, cheese, and salt.
- Place water and oil in a microwavable container and nuke until temp is 110 to 120 degrees.
- Pour into flour mixture and mix with a spoon. Add enough remaining flour to make a soft, slightly sticky dough while mixing with your hands.
- Knead dough on a floured surface until smooth and elastic adding flour as required; about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 500 degrees. If using a stone, place stone on lowest shelf so it will preheat.
- Place kneaded dough into a large bowl and lightly coat the dough with olive oil so the surface will not dry out. Cover the dough with plastic wrap or a damp cloth and place in a warm place. The top of the stove works well while the oven preheats.
- Allow dough to rise until doubled in size; about 30 to 40 minutes.
- Remove to a floured surface and knead for about 30 seconds.
- Shape dough into a ball and divide in half. Return half to the bowl and cover.
- Roll second half into desired size and shape and place on a pizza peel or pizza pan.
- If using a peel, lightly dust with cornmeal so the dough will easily slide from the peel to the stone. Place dough onto peel.
- If using a pan, lightly coat with oil and dust with cornmeal. Place dough on pan and finish shaping dough to fit.
- Top pizza with desired ingredients and dip two fingers into olive oil. Coat rim of crust with oil so it will brown nicely.
- Bake at 500 degrees for 10 to 20 minutes until toppings are bubbly and crust is browned.
- Cooking time will vary with thickness of dough and ingredients, so watch closely to avoid burning.
- Repeat with second dough ball for a second pizza, or wrap well and freeze for later use.