Friday night is pizza night and that means bring your creativity. How the pizza is topped is always a surprise and has lots to do with what's left in the fridge from the week! Last week The RQ, Little Brother, and P< enjoyed homemade pizza ever so lightly drizzled with olive oil, roasted red peppers, and sauteed onions. Ah, simple pleasures!
The RQ recommends always proofing the yeast. It doesn't take long and prevents waisting ingredients if it's not active. To proof active dry yeast dissolve yeast (amount called for in recipe of choice) in 1/4 cup warm water (100-110F), stir in 1 teaspoon of sugar, and let sit 10 minutes. If the mixture doubles the yeast is ready to go. Remember to make quantity adjustments for sugar and water used in proofing.
(2 small pizzas)
3 cups all-purpose or bread flour
1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast or rapid rise
2 Tablespoons sugar
1 1/4 cups ice cold water
1 Tablespoon olive/vegetable oil
1 heaping teaspoon salt
Proof yeast. While waiting for yeast to expand, combine flour and remaining sugar in food processor or kitchen aid with dough attachments. Once yeast is successfully proofed, gradually add 3/4 cup of the ice cold water to the dry ingredients on low speed. Next add proofed yeast mixture (includes 1/4 cup of water for total needed in recipe). Follow with the as much remaining 3/4+ cup ice cold water to bring the dough to a well-formed ball. Remember, the dough doesn't like to get too wet so be watchful! Now mix in oil and salt. Place dough on flat surface and knead for a few minutes or until smooth. Place in an oiled bowl and allow the dough to rise at least 3 hours. Punch down and let rise for another 30-60 minutes. Place inverted jelly-roll pan in lower third of oven. Preheat oven to 500F. Split dough in half and roll dough. Lightly brush pan with olive oil and place pizza dough directly to bake for 5 minutes or less, when bottom begins to crisp but not brown. Remove dough with spatula to cutting board or appropriate surface to dress with toppings of choice! Place back in oven for an addition 7-12 minutes. Enjoy!