Recipe: Pizza Dough

  • Updated: July 22, 2010 - 9:46 AM

PIZZA DOUGH

Makes 6 (8- to 10-inch) pizzas.

Note: Instant yeast is also called rapid rise or bread machine yeast.

• 31/2 c. all-purpose flour, plus extra

• 2 tsp. instant yeast (see Note)

• 2 tsp. kosher or coarse salt

• 11/4 c. cool water

• 1 tbsp. honey

• 1/4 c. olive oil

Directions

In a medium bowl, combine flour, instant yeast and salt.

Mix together water, honey and olive oil. Add liquids to flour, mixing with a wooden spoon until combined. (In a mixer, use the dough hook.)

Add additional flour if necessary until dough comes together in a fairly firm, slightly sticky ball.

Turn dough onto lightly floured surface. Compared with typical bread dough, pizza dough actually is better if it's a little undermixed. Knead dough for a few minutes, flouring hands if necessary, until the dough is smooth and elastic.

Place the dough in a large well-oiled bowl and turn it so the top is oiled. Cover with plastic wrap and let it rise until it begins to look puffy. Place in refrigerator overnight, or for at least 4 hours.

About an hour before baking or grilling, remove the dough from the refrigerator and turn out onto lightly floured surface. Divide into six equal parts and shape each into a smooth ball. Place the balls on an oiled baking sheet, leaving space to expand. Cover them with a dish towel and set aside. Use this time to prepare your toppings.

As the grill is heating, shape the rounds. Using a rolling pin on a floured surface or with floured hands, stretch each ball into an 8- to 10-inch circle and place them on separate sheets of floured parchment or waxed paper. You can stack them.

Take the dough rounds, your sauce of choice, and the assembled ingredients outside to the hot grill.

(If you're planning to bake this in the oven, place shaped dough on a baking sheet generously dusted with cornmeal and add toppings. If using a pizza stone, preheat it and then slide pizza onto it. Bake pizza in a preheated 450-degree oven for 15 minutes (if using heated pizza stone) or about 20 minutes if on a baking sheet.

Cooking on the grill: Heat your gas grill to medium, or about 400 degrees; if using coals, you should be able to hold your hand 6 inches over the heat for 3 seconds. Move the coals so that they heat half of the grate, to create areas of direct and indirect heat.

The assembly line approach to making multiple pizzas: Lightly brush one side of a dough round with olive oil and place it oil-side down on the grate directly over the coals. Replace the grill cover and oil the next round.

After about 1 minute, open the grill. The first round should look puffy and have clear grill marks on the underside. Remove it and flip it grilled-side up onto a cookie sheet. Quickly spread it with toppings, then return it to the portion of the grate that's over indirect heat. Place the next oiled round on the grate over the coals. Replace the grill cover.

After another minute or so, open the grill to check on the untopped pizza. If it's ready, remove it, replace grill cover, then add pizza toppings. The pizza in the grill should be done by now; if it is, remove it to a cutting board and place the newly topped pizza over that section of indirect heat. Place another oiled round over the coals, maintaining this system of topping and shifting until all the pizzas are baked.

 

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