Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Basic Pizza Dough from Mark Bittman

Well Mr. Bittman, in my book, you're two for two. First, your vanilla ice cream recipe and now your basic pizza dough.

I recently bought a handful (or rather a boxful given their girth) of cookbooks including the one here, Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything. I'm slowly making my way through all of the pages I've marked with little copper page points from Levenger or ye olde post-it flags.

John and I usually eat/make our own pizza about once a month. I've shown some of our efforts on this blog. Of all the dough recipes we've tried none have come close to the flavor and texture of Bittman's Basic.

What you see here is a 12-in. eggplant pie I made using some of the dough. It was light and airy, and tasted like pizza parlor dough. It was a bit plain in flavor, but Bittman suggests adding a variety of ingredients before adding the water to achieve a tastier dough. We intend to try the freshly cracked black pepper and garlic.

To the right is the upskirt. Crispy due in part to the high heat of the oven, the recipe, and the pan, the bottom of the pie came out perfectly.

Prior to laying the dough on the pan, I lightly sprayed it with canola oil.

Interestingly, Bittman says he gets 1 large or two small pizzas from the recipe. We got one large and two small. Maybe he likes deep dish pie. We like a relatively thin crust, but this poofed up enough to make typical pizza joint crust.

Here's a side view so you can have an idea of the height of the 'za.

The recipe is very simple and can be made by hand, in a food processor or a stand mixer. Of course, I used the Artisan mixer for this recipe.

Here's the recipe (I shortened it a bit for space):

1 teaspoon instant or rapid rise yeast
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons coarse Kosher or sea salt
1 to 1 1/4 cups water
2 tablespoons plus 1 tablespoon olive oil

1. Combine the yeast, flour, and salt in the mixer. As it is mixing, add the 1 cup of water and 2 T of oil.
2. Mix, adding more water until the mixture forms a ball and is slightly sticky.
3. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead for a few seconds until it forms a smooth round ball. Use the last tablespoon of oil to grease a bowl, and place the dough in the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm, draft free area until it doubles in size (1-2 hours). (It took ours much longer since we keep the house a bit cool due to energy prices. But, we were doing laundry, so putting the bowl on top of the dryer made the dough poof up well.)
4. Heat the oven to 500 degrees F while you stretch out the dough onto your pans. (This dough is really easy to manipulate, so it won't take long.)
5. Add your toppings. (We used my homemade tomato sauce and added a mixture of shredded cheeses. John left his plain, but I also added some fried panko-breaded eggplant I had from an earlier recipe.)
6. Cook for 10-12 minutes depending on how crisp you like your pizza.
7. Enjoy!


Sarah said...

Hello, Deb! Thank you for sharing your dough recipe. You should also read Food Matters! I think it's very helpful in selecting what dishes you should prepare on the table. The pizza looks tasty, I should really try your recipe this weekend!

Deb Schiff said...

I have read it and posted a review: http://www.amazon.com/review/RE5OLI9DQC6MP/ref=cm_cr_pr_viewpnt#RE5OLI9DQC6MP