Sometime last year, I discovered the joy of homemade pizza dough. It's so easy when made with active yeast, and it is so satisfying to make, changing the toppings based on my current cravings and pantry selections.
Friday night's pizza included some turkey jalapeno sausage from Green's Sausage House, artichoke hearts, fresh mozzarella, olive oil, orange bell peppers, mushrooms, shallots and Kalamata olives.
I modified the regular dough recipe Friday night, and I think I'll be making it this way again:
1 cup a-p flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
Pinch of kosher salt
2 1/4 teaspoons dry active yeast (I buy mine by the jar now, but you can just one packet of this if you don't purchase the jar; dry active yeast eliminates the need for a second rise)
3/4 cup warm water
Several glugs of a good beer (I used an IPA; instead of this, you could use honey or a sprinkle of sugar; you just need to give the yeast something to eat!)
1) Pour the yeast into the warm water and let sit.
2) Combine flours, salt, a glug of olive oil and the beer in a stand mixer (you can probably do this without a stand mixer, but it will be a lot more work).
3) Once the ingredients are combined, pour in the water/yeast mixture. Let the mixer run on low for a minute or two; you will know the misture is ready when it is combined well and mostly formed into one lump.
4)Coat the mixing bowl (or a new bowl) with a few drizzles of olive oil and roll the ball of dough in it to coat.
5) Cover bowl with a warm damp towel and let sit in a warm place for an hour.
6) Punch down dough, and it's ready to use. You can also let it sit longer at this point, and putting it in the fridge for later use is also a good choice. I find that the dough is even tastier after sitting in the fridge for a few hours.
When I make pizza at home, I prefer olive oil instead of tomato sauce, or sometimes pesto. Really, though, you can make this baby however you like!