I cannot remember the last time I actually ordered pizza. Since learning how easy it is to make my own, I’ve become really particular about my pie. “Light on the cheese, please” “Can I add spinach, mushrooms, and extra peppers to that?” “Do you have feta?” “Do you have whole wheat crust?” I’m probably a server’s worst nightmare! But local pizza joints need not worry about me walking in with my list of demands, my own homemade pizza trumps store-bought any day of the week.
The first time Laurie and I got together to cook, we made pizza dough. I had never attempted it before, honestly, making anything that involved yeast scared me away. But fear not! Yeast is not difficult to work with, especially when making dough for pizza. This simple pizza dough recipe requires just a little mixing and one rise before it’s ready to pop into your oven.
You don’t have to be an expert pizza dough tosser to make this recipe either (although it is fun to try sometimes. Warning: if your dough lands on the floor, make sure it’s free from dog hair before baking). I will typically whip up my dough and divide into about 3 separate balls. If I’m going to have pizza that night, I’ll keep one in the fridge and freeze the other two. That way, we always have it on tap for those nights that I’m totally stumped on what to make for dinner.
And of course, this wouldn’t be a Lettuce Have Lettuce post without pointing out the awesome nutritional benefits from making your own dough at home. This pizza dough recipe uses half whole wheat flour and has added flax for extra fiber (which we could all use more of). Our recipe is also low in fat, sodium, and sugar. And best of all, you know everything that goes into it, no preservatives or extra ingredients here! You can choose all of your own toppings and make it as healthy as you want. Load it up with fresh veggies, add leftover shredded chicken from last night’s dinner, snip some basil from you garden; the possiblities are endless!
So next time you’re thinking of ordering in, try making your own pizza at home. It’s way more fun and delicious, trust us! Also, watch for our upcoming post on tempeh “sausage”, the perfect vegetarian pizza topper (pictured below). Cheers!
- 2 cups warm Water
- 3 teaspoons Active dry yeast
- 2 tablespoons Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 2 cup All-purpose white flour
- 3 cup Whole wheat flour
- 1 tablespoon Ground flax seed (optional)
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 2 teaspoon Garlic powder
- olive oil
- Place water in a medium bowl (temperature should be just warm enough that if starts to feel hot when run over your wrist- or about 115 degrees if you have a thermometer). Sprinkle in yeast, and stir in sugar until everything dissolves.
- Use a whisk to stir in salt, flour, flax, and seasonings. When the mixture becomes too thick to whisk, mix with one floured hand. Knead in bowl for about 5 minutes.
- Coat a large bowl lightly with olive oil. Toss dough in bowl until coated with oil. Cover bowl with towel or plastic wrap and allow it to rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk (about 1 hour).
- After dough has risen, punch down and divide into 3 equal sections. At this point you can wrap each dough ball in plastic wrap, place in plastic freezer bag, and freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to use, place in refrigerator the night before to allow for thawing. Let dough rest on counter for about 20 minutes before rolling out with a rolling pin and baking.
- If using dough right away, heat oven to 475 degrees (if using pizza stone, place in oven upon heating). Roll dough out to desired thickness. Generously dust a cutting board with cornmeal. Place rolled dough on board and top with whatever toppings you like. When oven has heated, slide dough onto hot pizza stone. Turn oven down to 425-450 degrees and bake for 15-20 minutes until crust in golden brown and cheese has melted.
This pizza dough recipe is adapted from one of my all-time favorite cookbooks The New Moosewood Cookbook by Mollie Katzen.