My kids LOVE pizza, but to go to the local pizzeria every week would get pretty costly. Friday at the Cook household is pizza night. We do occasionally support our local pizza shop, but typically we make our own homemade pizza. Here is our favorite pizza dough recipe. I don’t remember where I found it, but we really like it. It makes 2 pizzas, approximately 12″ round. I usually make 2 batches for our family, so that we have plenty leftover for lunch on Saturday. If you like wheat dough, you can use a cup or two of wheat flour in place of part of the white flour.
1 1/2 cups warm water (not hot)
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. yeast
2 tsp. salt
4 Tbsp. olive oil
4 cups flour
Combine the water, sugar and yeast in a large bowl (I use my Kitchen Aid). Let sit long enough for the yeast to proof, which should only take a couple of minutes. When you see the yeast foaming, you’re ready to go.
Add the salt and olive oil. Next, add the flour, mixing after each cup.
After you have added all the flour, knead the dough for about 5 min. To knead, use your hands to fold the dough ball in half over and over. Use your palm to smash the ball together, then fold it in half and smash it together again. If the ball becomes to sticky, add a little more flour. The ball should not stick to the side of the bowl, but it should not be dry and cracking, either.
When you are done kneading, drizzle a little oil over the dough and place it in a clean bowl. Spread the oil all over the top of the dough with your hands. Cover the bowl with a warm, wet towel and put it in a warm place to rise. Let it rise until it has doubled in size, which should be about 40 min. or so. If you make the dough ahead of time and put it in the refrigerator after it is done rising, it is a little easier to work with when you are ready to shape your crust. I often don’t have time to cool it.
While the dough is rising, you should prepare your toppings. You can be as creative or traditional as you want. Basically get everything ready to go so that when your dough is ready all you have to do is put it together.
Use your favorite sauce. Sometimes we use crushed tomatoes sprinkled with a little bit of sugar. I add garlic powder and italian seasoning also.
Bake at 500 for about 8-10 min. I let it cool for a couple of minutes before I slice it so that the toppings don’t slide around so much.