Monday, October 26, 2009

What's for Dinner? Pizza! (Homemade, of course)

Oh, the fun of thinking, "What am I gonna make for dinner, tonight?". I had decided on homemade pizza early in the day, only to discover when I started cooking that my shredded mozzarella cheese had molded. In a panic, I reached for the kid's string cheese that I usually put in their lunches. So, I peeled and chopped 6 sticks of string cheese and put them on the pizza. The pizza turned out great!

We never strive for a perfectly round pizza. The utter beauty of this pizza is not in the shape, nor in the taste (which is quite good), but in the pennies this dinner costs. I think I make 2 whole pizzas for my family for less than $3! Add a salad and it's a perfect meal!

Now, if you haven't made your own pizza before, you're in for a treat. I use the recipe that came with my food processor, and it couldn't be easier (see below). After rolling the dough out, I brush it with olive oil, sprinkle lightly with salt, add tomato paste, right out of the can, add some oregano, basil, or other herbs, and spread with mozzarella cheese (my children only like plain cheese pizza). For me, I add all kinds of toppings (my favorite is fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced tomatoes and torn basil leaves) - experiment, I'm sure you'll be glad you did. I then fold over the outer edge for the crust.

Then bake in a preheated 500 degree oven for about 10 minutes and you're ready to eat! I use either a baking sheet with cornmeal spread on it, or I use a pizza stone that's been in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.

Here's the Pizza Dough Recipe:
Prepare the dough, and while it rises, use your Food Processor to chop, slice and shred the toppings for your pizza.

Servings - Makes 1-1/2 pounds dough (two 14-inch crusts) / 8 servings

1 package (2-1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm (105?F) water
1 teaspoon sugar
4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 cup cold water
flour for dusting


In a 2-cup liquid measure, dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water. Let stand until foamy, about 3 - 5 minutes. Insert dough blade in work bowl and add flour, salt and olive oil. Add cold water to yeast mixture.With machine running, pour liquid through small feed tube as fast as flour absorbs it. Process until dough cleans sides of work bowl and forms a ball. Then process for 45 seconds to knead dough. Dough may be slightly sticky. Dust dough lightly with flour; transfer to a plastic food storage bag, squeeze out air and seal top. Let rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes.

Place dough on a lightly floured surface and punch down, let rest 5 - 10 minutes. Roll into desired crust sizes and follow pizza recipe.

Note: If you only wish to make one pizza, you may freeze half the dough before it rises. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and place in a freezer bag. When ready to use, remove in the morning, unwrap, rub with olive oil and place in a medium bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and allow the dough to thaw and rise during the day. It will be ready punch down and roll out in about 8 hours.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That looks so De-lish!!!

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