I have been interested in getting into bread making, but I'm a little intimidated by the whole process since I'm not at all familiar with making bread. Well I decided to take the plunge and try pizza dough from scratch. I found the recipe in my favorite cook book, The Complete Cooking Light Cook Book, since it pretty much has a recipe for everything. The recipe is titled Basic Pizza Crust, which pretty much tells the whole story right there. The recipe was incredibly easy to follow and the end product is very nice crust that crisped up nicely and had a very pleasant chewy consistency.
The day we made this pizza I got the whole family involved in decorating up our pizza. My little girl, Sammie, wasn't at all interested in evenly distributing the pepperoni she liked the grab and toss method. Which looked more like she was attempting to imbed the pile of pepperoni into the pizza. Needless to say we all had a blast making the pizza and even had more fun eating it.
1 package dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 cup warm water (100º to 110ºF)
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 tablespoon cornmeal
1. Dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Stir 2 1/2 cups flour, salt, and oil into yeast mixture to form a soft dough.
2. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. knead until smooth and elastic (about 5 minutes); add enough of remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel tacky).
3. Place dough in a bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover; let rise in a warm place (85º), free from drafts, 35 minutes or until doubled in size. (Press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, the dough has risen enough.)
4. punch dough down; cover and let rest 5 minutes. Divide dough in half; roll each half into a 12 inch circle on a flour surface. Placed ough on two 12 inch pizza pans or baking sheets that are each coated with cooking spray and sprinkled with 1/2 tablespoon cornmeal. Crimp edges of dough with fingers to form a rim. Let ries 30 minutes. Top and bake according to recipe directions.
Yield: 2 (12 inch) pizza crusts, 4 wedges each (serving size: 1 wedge)