Pizza is a bit weak as my January/International project but hey, let’s see The Sisters proof some yeast. Yeah, that’s a challenge!
Once again I found this recipe via Tastespotting at Week of Menus blog spot and I’ve bookmarked it to use whenever it’s pizza night in our house.
Olive Oil Master Dough (from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day)
Makes 4 1lb loaves. This recipe is easily doubled or halved
2 3/4 cups lukewarm water
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon sugar (or 2 tablespoons of honey)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
6 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (alternatively 4 cups regular unbleached all purpose flour and 2 1/2 cups whole wheat white flour)
1. Mix the yeast, salt, sugar and olive oil with the water in a 5-qt bowl. Cover with a tea towel and allow approx. 5 minutes to proof.
2. Mix in the flour without kneading, using a large wooden spoon or a fork.
3. Cover (not airtight) and allow to rest at room temperature for about 2 hours. It will rise and get super big. You can use the dough at this point, or refrigerate and use over next 12 days.
To make one flatbread, pinch off a grapefruit sized piece of dough. When you do this, your dough will deflate. This is okay, as it will rise again later. Loosely cover and refrigerate the rest to use over the next 12 days, or in my case make pizza until it’s all gone! Gently work the dough into whatever shape pan you are cooking on. Personally, I make my pizzas on a rectangular cookie sheet.
Preheat oven to 220°C / 425°F
Grease the cookie sheet with a tablespoon of olive oil. Transfer the dough to the cookie sheet and use your fingers to pat it until it covers the whole cookie sheet.
From here it’s pretty much an experiment every time. Sometimes I’ll rub the dough with olive oil and fresh garlic and then top that with either homemade or store-bought tomato sauce. Next comes the cheese and then whatever fresh vegetable toppings I have in the fridge. I top it off with fresh cracked pepper, garlic salt & crushed chilli flakes.
Stick the cookie sheet in the oven for approx. 7 – 10 minutes. Once the crust is a bit crunchy, pull the pizza from the oven and slide a spatula underneath it to ensure it’s not sticking to the cookie sheet, then carefully slide the pizza directly onto the baking rack. This gives you a nicely baked crust. Cook it on the rack for another 5 minutes before carefully sliding the pizza out of the oven and onto a cutting board.
Allow a few minutes too cool, then slice it up and enjoy!
Garlic knots: I took the last portion of dough and patted it into a circle. I crushed two cloves of garlic in a press and spread it onto the dough. I gently kneaded the dough until the garlic was incorporated fully.
I patted the dough into a circle again and cut it into approx. 12 pieces. I placed these on a greased cookie sheet.
Pour approx. 2 tabsp. of olive oil into a small bowl. Add a pinch of oregano, basil and garlic salt. Stir this up and then brush each knot with the herbed olive oil.
Stick the tray in the oven until the knots are lightly golden – approx. 10 minutes.
Remove from oven, allow a few minutes to cool, then enjoy!