I made this via the stand mixer method. There’s something appealing about the though of meditatively kneading by hand, but my back can’t handle it. I couldn’t find my paddle and had to use the wire whisk, which was a sticky mess of a situation. I was able to scrape the dough wad out from the middle of the wires, but it took more time than I’d like, so it’ll do in a pinch, but do try harder than I did to find a paddle. No matter how organized I think my kitchen implements are, there’s always something hidden away who knows where.
I made the basic white flour dough, refrigerated one half, froze the other half, and used both halves three days later. The dough continued to rise in the refrigerator, and the frozen dough rose as it thawed. I couldn’t tell the difference between the two. I had just as much trouble shaping this recipe as I do every pizza crust recipe, and the consistency was pretty much what they all wind up being: a firm, cracker-y topping delivery system. The happy difference was that this one cooked all the way through. Baking the crust halfway, then again after adding the toppings was key to getting this to come out at all in our stupid broken oven. Every other recipe burns on the edges and doesn’t cook in the middle. I think I’ll try that trick with other pies I try baking on cookie sheets. The bread stone has been a failure every time, even when preheated.
Yield: Two 12-inch pizzas
- 1 cup water
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 3 cups bread flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 2¼ tsp (one package) RED STAR Active Dry Yeast
Preheat oven to 400°F
- Combine yeast, 1 cup flour, and salt. Combine liquids and heat to 120°-130°F.
- Combine 1 cup of dry mixture and liquid ingredients in mixing bowl with paddle or beaters for 4 minutes on medium speed. Gradually add remaining flour and knead with dough hook(s) 5 to 7 minutes until smooth and elastic.
- Let dough rest 15 minutes. Divide into 2 parts. Press each half into a generously greased 12-inch round pizza pan sprinkled with cornmeal. (I don’t use much cornmeal because it doesn’t make much difference to us.)
- Pre-bake for 10-12 minutes in pre-heated 400°F oven until edges of crust begin to turn light golden brown.
- Add desired toppings.
- Bake an additional 15 minutes.
Here are all of the instructions and methods from the Red Star website:
BREAD MACHINE METHOD
Have liquid ingredients at 80°F, all others at room temperature. Place room temperature ingredients in pan in the order listed. Select Dough/Manual cycle. Check dough consistency after 5 minutes of kneading. The dough should be in a soft, tacky ball. If it is dry and stiff, add water, ½ to 1 Tbsp at a time. If it is too wet and sticky, add 1 Tbsp of flour at a time. At the end of the last kneading cycle, press STOP/CLEAR, remove dough from pan. Proceed to Rising, Shaping and Baking instructions below. See our Bread Machine section for more helpful tips and information.
Combine yeast, 1 cup flour, and salt. Combine liquids and heat to 120°-130°F.
Hand-Held Mixer Method
Combine dry mixture and liquid ingredients in mixing bowl on low speed. Beat 2 to 3 minutes on medium speed. By hand, stir in enough remaining flour to make a firm dough. Knead on floured surface 5 to 7 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Use additional flour if necessary.
Stand Mixer Method
Combine dry mixture and liquid ingredients in mixing bowl with paddle or beaters for 4 minutes on medium speed. Gradually add remaining flour and knead with dough hook(s) 5 to 7 minutes until smooth and elastic.
FOOD PROCESSOR METHOD
Have all ingredients at room temperature. Place dry ingredients in processing bowl with steel blade. Process briefly to blend. While motor is running add water and oil. Process until mixed. Continue processing until dough cleans the sides of bowl.
RISING, SHAPING AND BAKING
Let dough rest 15 minutes. Divide into 2 parts. Press each half into a generously greased 12-inch round pizza pan sprinkled with cornmeal. Pre-bake for 10-12 minutes in pre-heated 400°F oven until edges of crust begin to turn light golden brown. Add desired toppings and bake an additional 15 minutes.
*You can substitute Instant (fast-rising) yeast in place of Active Dry Yeast. When using Instant Yeast, expect your dough to rise faster. Always let your dough rise until ripe. Traditional methods: use equal amounts; Bread Machine: use ½ tsp Instant Yeast OR ¾ tsp Active Dry Yeast per cup of flour in your recipe. Visit our Lessons in Yeast & Baking for more information on baking.
A whole wheat crust can be made by substituting 1 cup whole wheat flour and 2 cups bread flour for the 3 cups of bread flour called for in the recipe. A cheese crust can be made by adding ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese and 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning blend to the original recipe.