It’s official. I have mastered the pizza. (Insert bow here). I also enjoy the fact that fact that I am taking full credit for this one, although really the credit goes to Andrew Janjigian, author of the article and recipe in this month’s Cook’s Illustrated. He did a lot of experimenting with getting the right consistency, thinness and flavor. And for that I am forever in debt. This pizza was crisp, thin, full of flavor and for once, a cheese pizza tasted like it came from Guidos or any awesome NY style pizza joint. I used whole milk mozzarella, not the pre-shredded stuff you buy from Kraft. (The squishy ball).
- 3 cups bread flour, plus more for work surface
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon instant or rapid-rise yeast
- 1 1/3 cups ice water
- 1 T vegetable oil plus more for work surface
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
In a food processor fitted with a metal blade (bajillion times faster than the stand mixer), process flour, sugar and yeast until combined, about 2 seconds. With machine running, slowly add water through feed tube; process until dough is just combined and no dry bits remain, about 10 seconds. Let dough stand 10 minutes.
Add oil and salt to dough and process until dough forms satiny, sticky ball that clears sides of workbowl, 30-60 seconds. Remove dough from bowl, knead about 1 minute on lightly oiled countertop until smooth (I also used a little flour to avoid sticking). Shape dough into ball and place in a large, lightly oiled boil tightly covered with plastic wrap and place in fridge for at least 24 hours but no more than 3 days. Each day the flavor will develop more.
- 1-28oz can whole peeled tomatoes, drained
- 1 T extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp red wine vinegar
- 2 medium garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp table salt
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
I found that making this when you make the dough and storing this in the fridge allows the flavors to blend.
Position the top rack on the very top slot (this is where you want to cook your pizza). Place pizza stone in oven and PREHEAT to 500 or as high as it will go.
Remove dough from the fridge and divide into 2-3 balls. Place on lightly oiled baking sheet and allow to rest for 1 hour or until at room temp. Using fingertips, gently flatten into 8-inch disk, then use hands to stretch into a 12-inch round. At this point, I put corn meal on my pizza peel (large wooden spatula) and dress the pizza here. Spread pizza sauce on the dough and top with mozzarella, vegetables and whatever other toppings you prefer.
Now it’s time to bake! Slide the pizza from the peel directly to the oven. Let bake for 10-15 minutes or until the cheese begins to brown and the crust turns a nice golden, melt in your mouth color. Use your pizza peel to slide your pizza off of the stone and onto a wire cooling rack. Allow to sit for 5 minutes and then slice and enjoy.
Heaven isn’t too far away. Wa wa. Closer to it every day!