Sunday, March 6

Homemade Pizza & Pizza Dough

I love making homemade pizza. At one time I used to buy the powdered dough mix from the store. It was quite simple to make by just adding hot water and some oil. Those mixes served us well for quite a while until we bought a Dutch oven for baking bread. In the past I had never used yeast, but now that I was experimenting with baking bread, why not pizza dough? So I began.

The first time I made pizza dough I found a recipe online and it turned out good except it was super thick. We typically make our pizzas with a thinner crust. The dough would have worked perfectly if I had divided it into 2 pizzas instead of 1. Lesson learned. Now I study the reviews closely to see if people say it tends to be thick or thin. My 2nd attempt at pizza dough came out great. Both my husband and I really liked it and it was the perfect thickness for us, but now began my search for a wheat pizza dough recipe as it’s needed in one of my upcoming recipes next week.

I found this recipe online and chose to make it based on the great reviews it received. Some said this was the best pizza dough they’ve had. In my books that means it’s a must try. Glancing at the ingredients I saw honey was included. You know how I feel about honey. That could only mean it’s gotta be good.

If you haven’t worked with yeast before, don’t let it frighten you. I used to read recipes and be scared away by the term ‘proofing’ yeast. Proofing sounds scientific and a little too complex for my tastes. Before using the yeast you’d need to make sure it was frothy or bubbly. How would I recognize this? But then I read a short snippet from a book one day that made everything seem much easier than the cookbooks declared. The reason why recipes call for proofing is to make sure the yeast is alive or active, because what could be worse than making a fresh batch of dough only to find it doesn’t rise after all that hard work? What the book authors reminded bakers is that when you buy yeast at the store (whether in packets or a jar), there’s always an expiration date that’s clearly marked. So if the yeast you have is not expired, you really don’t need to proof it as 99.9% of the time it’s alive. That put my mind at ease. So if you’d like to proof the yeast for peace of mind then go ahead, but if you don’t chances are your bread or dough will rise. There’s one thing that I think you’ll enjoy about proofing, when the yeast is combined with the water it smells really delicious. Maybe it smells so good because you know you’ll have pizza or bread shortly.

Proofed Yeast

Also, if you have a KitchenAid mixer, you really should try making bread or dough with it as it handles some tough mixing and kneading with ease. I used mine to make this dough. Remember, when making, you’ll need to use the mixing attachment that looks like a hook. Another reason why I like using the mixer is that the mixing bowl doubles as a nice large bowl that the dough can rise in.

There’s one thing I’d suggest in making this recipe and that’s to double it. You can one make pizza now and freeze the remaining dough for later. To freeze the dough form into a ball and place inside of a regular zip lock bag. Just remember to remove it from the freezer the night before you’ll need to use it (allowing enough time to de-thaw). I made this recipe over the weekend (doubled and froze) so that we could try a new pizza recipe later in the week. If you decide to freeze multiple batches for use at a later time just make sure each has their own bag.

I have not tried this recipe yet as I’m going to use it in a new recipe, Black Bean & Corn Pizza, that I’ll be trying next week and posting about. I’ll be sure to share if we liked it at that time. I think it’s going to be great though as my husband who was in the basement came upstairs and asked what smelled so good. At that point I had only made the dough and he thought he smelled pizza. So I think that’s a good sign!

Voila!  Ready to be made into pizza:

Whole Wheat Pizza Dough
Serves: Dough for 1 large pizza
Prep Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 45 mins

  • 1 (1/4 ounce) package fast rising yeast
  • 1 cup warm water (not hot, luke warm, as hot water can kill the yeast)
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme

  1. Combine the yeast and the water, stir until dissolved. Let sit for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients to a bowl. Note: If doubling the recipe make sure this is a large bowl.
  3. Add the yeast mixture into the bowl with the remaining ingredients. Using dough hook, mix until well combined.
  4. Remove dough from mixer, sprinkle countertop with small amount of flour (will reduce sticking), knead on countertop until it forms a nice ball.
  5. Let rest in large bowl for at least a 1/2 hour. Note: If freezing, the dough can now be packaged to freeze.
  6. When ready to make the pizza, fit dough into the shape of a large pan (rectangular or circular). I use a 14.5 x 10 in. rectangular pan.
  7. Bake pizza at 450°F for 12 minutes or until cheese starts to turn a slight golden brown color.

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