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Friday, December 19, 2014

Our Best Pizza Dough and Pizza Sauce...So Far

I have been on the hunt for a perfect pizza dough and sauce recipe for years. We like the Papa John's like crusts, where it is flaky and soft, but a little crunchy on the outside. We have done a lot of research and testing and this year I think we have found our favorite so far from this highly technical pizza making blog: The key to this recipe is weighing the ingredients rather than trusting measuring cups and spoons. So get out your kitchen scale and try this recipe.

Pizza Dough (makes 2 balls)

Flour (all purpose is okay but King Arthur All purpose Flower is the best to use due to it's higher gluten %): 708.88 g
Warm Water: 400.52 g
Instant Dry Yeast: 1 g
Salt: 12.4 g
Vegetable Oil: 51.74 g
Sugar: 34.02 g

In a stand mixer, mix the water, sugar, salt, oil, and dry yeast. Slowly add the flour until incorporated. mix until it begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl. If it doesn't, add a little more flour until it does. Mix for 5-7 minutes with a dough hook to knead. Place in a well greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap, let rise for 60-90 minutes or until doubled in size. Pull out of bowl, divide into two, and roll into two tight dough balls.  Cover and place in the fridge overnight for a cold rise. (If you do not have time to do the overnight rise, just let them rise again in a warm place until the dough balls have doubled in size, about 40-60 minutes then form the pizzas. but if you have the time, definitely do the overnight cold rise)

Before cooking, pull out the cold dough and let rise one last time for 30-45 minutes. Pre-heat oven with pizza stone (very important!) to 500F degrees for at least a half hour. Roll or manipulate one dough ball into a 14" pizza round. Add toppings and cheese of your choice and slide onto the stone.  Cooking time usually takes about 12-15 minutes. Just watch it and pull it out when the crust is perfectly dark brown. Let rest for 10-15 minutes and cut and serve. 

Pizza Sauce

1 10 3/4-ounce can of tomato puree (Yes, find the can that says "Puree") 
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1/8 teaspoon basil
1/8 teaspoon thyme
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

Combine ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.