Cecilia’s "I Want Pizza NOW" Recipe
I know! I hear you! That was a weird title, right? But like all baking everyone has their favorite pizza base method. Everyone has their own best pizza recipe. There are long fermentation recipes, sourdough recipes and yeast recipes. After a summer of experimenting with as many as I could find, using Janie’s Mill flours of course, I have settled on my own I want Pizza NOW recipe. Because, as tasty as a long ferment is, and Andris Langsdon has a lovely long ferment recipe to bake on the Baking Steel. I use this one often with our Janie’s Mill Italian Style Pizza Flour especially when feeding a mob of people. But I am a working woman and as much as I would like to be able to remember to make my pizza dough on Wednesday night for Friday night pizza, the days rush past - and then it is Friday and all I want is Pizza. Right. NOW!
So we all need a few pizza recipes on hand. This is my fast yeast recipe.
This whole process should take a little over two hours depending on the weather in your kitchen.
- 480g (3 1/2 cups) Janie’s Mill Italian Style Pizza Flour (have 1/2 a cup of flour on hand to make adjustments)
- 350g (1 1/2 cups) warm water (72% hydration)
- 6 g (1 teaspoon) salt
- 6 g (2 teaspoons) instant yeast
Mix the flour with the water until the dough is just pulling away from the sides of the bowl. I use a stand mixer with a paddle. This should not take longer than one minute. Cover and let the dough rest. The flour and water can get acquainted for around 20 - 30 minutes.
Turn the dough out onto a damp or oily counter (not floury unless your dough feels too wet), pat the dough flat on top, sprinkle salt and yeast evenly on the surface of the dough. Sprinkle a teaspoon of water on the dough and stipple the salt and yeast in with your fingertips. Stretch and fold together twice, to incorporate. Rest 20 minutes.
Stretch and fold lightly for about 1 minute. No longer. Rest 20 minutes.
Stretch and fold again then place dough in an oiled bowl and let rise for 90 minutes or doubled in size. (If you want a thinner crust allow the dough to over-proof just a little).
Now - we have worked hard to get a light dough with lots of air bubbles so be careful not to expel those lovely bubbles in your next step .
Turn your oven to 500F. Have your Baking Steel or pizza stone in the oven already so it heats up with your oven.
Gently, gently, turn out the dough onto your work surface. Using a sharp knife or your bench scraper, (an essential kitchen tool in my opinion - I hope to have some on the website soon) divide the dough into 2, 3 or 4 pieces, depending on your family preference. Pick up each piece of dough and gently tuck the edges under, turning it in your hand, mindful of being gentle, until you have created a ball. (you can do this on the counter if, like me, you make huge pizzas). Drag and turn the ball of dough along the clean counter, tucking under, using friction to tighten the skin. Rest.
Allow your dough balls to sit and rest (seam-side down) on the counter, covered with a damp towel for twenty minutes while you gather your toppings.
When your toppings are ready, create your pizza base by stretching, or pressing outwards with your damp fingertips or dancing the dough along your knuckles. Arrange your round flat pizza base onto a pizza paddle sprinkled with Janie’s Mill cornmeal. Shake a little to discourage sticking.
Place your toppings (see below for a few of my favorites).
Launch into the hot oven and bake for 15 - 20 minutes depending on your preference and your oven.
For a summer pizza I skip the tomato sauce on my pizza (saving those summer tomato preserves for winter) and simply lay thin slices of home grown tomato on the base and top those with cubes of a hard canadian cheddar and then sage that has been tossed in sizzling brown salty butter. Or even kale chips. Or even spaghetti slices of fresh green kale because I am the kale girl.
Or seared peaches and labneh, topped with lemon zest and parmesan.
Or butternut and caramalized onions shot with balsamic vinegar.
Or Beautiful fresh mozzarella on fresh tomato paste and straight after cooking arrange basil to wilt into the sauce.
Set your taste buds free. All recipes are subjective. The beauty of baking and cooking is the sheer glorious breadth of success we can have. The most important component is really good ingredients and tons of fun. Here are a couple of tips.
Work the dough gently so as to retain the lightness and air. Roll for a thin base.
Add water a teaspoon at a time during your stretch and folds if you need more hydration.
If you prefer a deep dish pizza, add a tablespoon of oil to the water before mixing and bake in a cast-iron pan with high sides.
Cast a slight drizzle of good olive oil across the top of your pizza just before baking.
Bake in a really hot oven - I heat mine to 500F and allow an extra 30 minutes of pre-heating to get the Baking Steel really hot.
The only rules for toppings is not to use too much sauce. Pile the greens on after cooking.
Right at the end of your cooking period turn on the broiler for a quick burst of fire to slightly caramalize the topping.
The High Protein Bread Flour makes a great fast moving sourdough pizza base . And I have a friend who swears by the Frederick Cake Flour for her pizza base. We have a professional baker in California who adds 10% Einkorn to his pizza flour - he said it tastes of Rome.
ANOTHER EASY RECIPE:
There are many recipes and methods for pizza. Here is another one. Written very fast and on the fly!
- 500g Pizza Flour
- 370 Water
- 1 tablespoon yeast in a tablespoon of water
- 1 teaspoon salt
Mix the flour and water together, make a well and pour in the wet yeast. Allow to sit for twenty minutes. Sprinkle over the salt and mix together with a dough hook. (NO longer than 30 seconds). Either in the bowl or on the counter, and using floury hands, stretch and fold a couple of times then allow to sit and rise until almost double. You can leave it to proof in the refrigerator for 24 hours or use it straight away.
Posted on March 09 2020