Living in Chicago and not liking deep-dish pizza didn’t leave me with very many pizza options, so I have been trying to create my own. Over the last few months and through much trial and error, Dustin and I have gotten pretty close to what I would consider perfect pizza dough. After going to Sunday Supper Club (a local dining club that hosts dinners in the chefs’ home, with a new theme each month), we found the missing piece… 00 flour. It is a super fine flour and dough made with it is much more wet than regular dough. Making dough from scratch is more work than just buying it premade or calling for delivery, but it tastes so much better fresh and is so much more gratifying to make (and eat!). I made a vegetarian pizza with seared tempeh and a carnivore’s version with Milano salami for Dustin.
3 cups “00” flour
½ teaspoon instant yeast
1 ½ tablespoons kosher salt
1 ½ cups water
Small amount of corn meal to prevent sticking
Combine flour, yeast, and salt in a large bowl. Add the water and stir until the mixture comes together.
Cover bowl with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 18 hours at room temperature.
After 18 hours, add a good amount of flour to a flat work area and divide the dough into 3 portions. It will be sticky so the flour will make the dough easier to work with. Cover the dough with flour (so it doesn’t stick) and then a towel. Let it sit for 2 hours.
About an hour into the 2 hour period, pre-heat oven to 500 degrees and place a pizza stone in the oven. We just recently bought a pizza stone. It is a hassle, to be honest, but contributes greatly to the quality of the final crust.
Again using a lot of flour on your work area, stretch the dough out to about 9 inches, as evenly as you can to make your pizza crust. Stretching is better than rolling, by the way!
Spread corn meal on a sheet pan. Place the dough on the sheet pan and transfer the dough to the pizza stone. This transfer can be tricky the first time. More cornmeal will make it slide easier.
Bake each piece of dough for about 5 minutes. Remove the crust from the oven and let it sit for a minute or two. At this point you can top the crusts with your favorite toppings or you can freeze them for later in the week.
Preheat your broiler. Make sure to use your baking sheet for this step. Pizza stones don’t like the broiler. Put your pizza back in the oven and broil it for 1-3 minutes. Watch it closely because it will cook unbelievably quickly. I like my pizza pretty toasty so I leave it in for about 3 or 4 minutes.
I topped our pizzas with mozzarella, sautéed green peppers, garlic, sun dried tomatoes, onions, and jalapenos because I can’t get enough heat. I sautéed tempeh for my vegetarian pizza. Dustin’s protein was Milano salami.
This dough recipe is from the Sunday Supper Club