Pizza Dough

from Eggs on Sunday

The recipe below makes enough for one 14-inch pizza. You can easily double it and freeze the other half after the dough rises; freeze in a ziptop bag and then thaw it in the refrigerator or at room temperature the day you plan to use it (make sure to let it come up to room temperature before you roll it out and bake it — cold dough won’t cut it!)

 

 

 

Ingredients
10 ounces bread flour (AP flour works fine, too) -- I prefer to measure by weight, but if you don't have a scale, figure that 4.5 ounces of bread flour roughly equals 1 cup -- so 10 ounces is roughly 2 1/4 cups. You'll want to adjust the flour in the dough so it's tacky, but not sticky.
7 ounces warm water (90-110 degrees F, but I don’t usually measure – just can’t be hot)
a drizzle of olive oil
1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
1 teaspoon kosher salt

Directions

Mix the flour, yeast and salt together in a large bowl. Stir in the warm water and olive oil, and mix until the dough comes together (it will be shaggy and there may still be some dry bits of flour on the bottom of the bowl.) Turn the whole thing out onto a lightly floured surface — I use my kitchen work table — and knead until the dough smooths out and passes the windowpane test*, about 6-8 minutes, adding more flour as needed to keep it from being too sticky. The resulting dough will be tacky but not super sticky.

[*Windowpane test: pull off a small piece of dough, and gently stretch it in all directions until the middle is paper thin. When you’ve kneaded the dough enough to develop the gluten sufficiently, the middle should be able to be stretched thin (and be translucent, like a windowpane) without tearing. If it tears easily, keep kneading a few minutes more.]

Place the kneaded dough in a lightly oiled bowl and turn a few times to coat with oil. Cover with a dishtowel and let it rise in a warm place until doubled, about 2 hours. Since we keep our house cool, I place my bowl on an electric heating pad to keep the temperature around the bowl warm and encourage rising.

After it’s risen 2 hours, remove from the bowl and gently flatten the dough. If you are going to freeze it, transfer it to a ziptop bag now. Otherwise,  stretch it into a pizza round (I do this directly on my pizza peel, after I’ve generously dusted it with flour or coarse cornmeal.) Top your pizza as desired, and bake it in a 500 degree F oven until the crust is starting to turn golden brown, about 8 minutes.