This recipe is taken from Food Network’s Emeril Lagasse. Here is the link to his recipe.
I am hoping to find a pizza dough recipe that 1) I can make at Denver’s altitude without much problem, 2) a dough that passes the taste test of my two-year-old, and 3) a food processor recipe that my mom can make at her house as well. This dough recipe just about passes all three criteria without actually passing any of them: I did make it at an altitude of a mile above sea level and it was ok but not perfect (likely my fault and not the recipe); my two-year-old was too fussy at dinner time tonight and had no interest in trying it; and I am just sharing the recipe now on this blog with my mom so she hasn’t had the opportunity to try it yet either. Nonetheless, I am confident that this dough is going in the right direction.
1 package active dry yeast
1 cup warm water, 110 degrees F
2 ½ to 3 cups flour, plus more if necessary
1 ½ tsp salt
1 ½ TB extra-virgin olive oil
I won’t repeat the directions here since Emeril and the Food Network did a fine job of that on their site. I will show you the steps I took and will add comments as I go.
1. Mix the yeast and water and let proof. I was slightly confused at this point (yes, already!) because the directions first state to mix all of the ingredients, stir well and let proof. Then it says to add the proofed yeast to the flour, salt and olive oil in the food processor. I was unsure when to add the flour, salt and oil so I decided to first let the warm water and yeast sit for 5 minutes in one bowl, then add them to the rest of the ingredients in the food processor. I was hoping the yeast would bubble up and look like it was ready to get moving but it was rather uneventful. Maybe that has happened before when I add a small bit of sugar at this stage? Still, things turned out ok later on.
2. Next I used the food processor to mix everything until the dough formed a ball. This step took more flour than I expected, maybe an extra ½ cup to ¾ cup beyond what the ingredients called for, this may have been due to the altitude but I am not sure. I’ll have to experiment some more next time.
3. The dough sits in a lightly-oiled bowl for about an hour or until it doubles in size. My oven was still warm from my using it earlier in the day so I placed the dough balls in the oven to rise.
4. After the dough doubles in size it is time to make it into a pizza! First I dusted the surface with cornmeal for a bit of texture and then wished I could toss it in the air like the guys do at the local pizza place. This is yet another area in which I could use practice. I stretched the dough, trying to keep its thickness relatively uniform but I had some areas that were quite thin and the outer edges were rather lumpy.
5. I brushed the dough with a small bit of olive oil around the edges then added pizza sauce and cheese. The pizza baked at 500 degrees F for 15 minutes.
The pizza was good, for a first try, and I ate a piece without much of a complaint. I did bake the cheese a bit too long in an attempt to let the crust become more golden, but I didn’t achieve that as the photos show. Maybe next time I will bake the crust on its own first, then will add the sauce and toppings. I did freeze half of the dough so that I can try calzones another night. I also am curious to see how the dough freezes and defrosts en route to another pizza creation. Enjoy!