The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Pizza

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

You can go nuts trying to find the perfect pizza dough formula. The cookbooks and the web are full of recipes for various types of dough and full of opinions regarding the type of flour to use, the ingredients (beyond flour, water, salt and yeast) and the mixing and fermentation methods that work best.

My goal for today was what I understand to be classic pizza napoletana. The dough should consist of the four basic ingredients only – no oil, sugar, malt or other stuff. The crust should be very thin and crisp on the bottom, not soft or soggy. The toppings should be minimal, so the crust is the main attraction.

After reading through many, many recipes, I settled on the one in Maggie Glezer's “Artisan Breads.” It uses the 4 ingredients only. It is for a Naples-style pizza. It is credited to Emanuele Leonforte of Hosteria restaurant in Port Chester, New York.

Leonforte uses a mix of Doppio Zero and high-gluten flour that Glezer calculates as resulting in about 12.5% protein. He uses a remarkably short mix. He ferments the dough for a long time but only once. Glezer gives the option of retarding the dough overnight and fermenting it the next day, and that fit best with my schedule. The method I used is described below.

 

Ingredients

Wt.

Baker's %

KAF Bread Flour

500 g

100

Instant yeast

1/4 tsp

0.2

Salt

10 g

2

Water, lukewarm

330

66

 

Method

  1. Measure the flour, yeast and salt into the bowl of a stand mixer and mix them.

  2. With the dough hook in place and the mixer at slow speed, gradually pour in the water.

  3. Mix until the dough forms a ball and cleans the side of the bowl, about 3 minutes.

  4. Cover the bowl and let the dough rest for 10-15 minutes.

  5. Mix the dough at Speed 2 for about 3 minutes. It should be fairly smooth but will not pass the window pane test.

  6. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured board and divide it into 4 equal pieces of about 200 g each (to make 10 inch pizzas).

  7. Shape each piece into a tight ball.

  8. Place each ball into a 1 qt Ziploc bag with a tablespoon of olive oil. Roll the ball in the oil and seal the bags.

  9. The dough can be refrigerated overnight, frozen for later use or allowed to ferment at room temperature for 5 to 6 hours for use the same day. (I refrigerated two balls and froze two.)

  10. For refrigerated dough, remove it to room temperature 3-5 hours before you plan on making the pizza, depending on room temperature.

  11. An hour before baking, pre-heat the oven to 500ºF (or more, if possible) with a baking stone on the middle shelf.

  12. Remove one ball at a time from its bag and shape into a 10 inch round by your method of choice.

  13. Top the pizza as desired, immediately transfer it to the baking stone, and bake for 8-10 minutes until done. Repeat for additional pizzas.

The toppings I used for each pizza were:

  1. Brush the entire surface of the shaped pizza dough with olive oil.

  2. Sprinkle with a tablespoon of finely chopped fresh rosemary.

  3. Sprinkle with a large clove of garlic, sliced very thin.

  4. Distribute on the pizza a cup of cherry tomatoes, halved, cut side up or a cup of fresh roma tomatoes peeled, seeded and cut into quarters.

  5. After baking, optionally top with fresh arugula or basel leaves.

 

Pizza with Cherry Tomatoes, pre-bake

Pizza with Cherry Tomatoes, baked

Pizza with Roma Tomatoes, pre-bake

Pizza with Roma Tomatoes, baked

The results were wonderful! The dough stretched easily to paper thin without tearing and baked so crisp there was no sagging when a slice was help up by the corona. Biting into it was a noisy crunch. The flavor of the crust was delicious. The whole experience sold me on minimalist toppings.

Pizza bottom crust

Thin crust

Crust

I don't think adding a few capers, or olives or mushrooms would do any harm, but I don't think making pizzas with heavy saucing, lots of cheese or lots of anything will be tempting again.

 The pizza was a nice follow-up to last night's bruschetta.

Bruschetta with fresh funghi porcini and with tomatoes and basel

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting

breadbakingbassplayer's picture
breadbakingbass...


I had some extra sourdough starter that I needed to use, and have been craving pizza for breakfast.  This recipe is extremely easy and the dough is very flavorful and has a light sour tang.  Enjoy!

Tim

Recipe
266g AP (+ 1 tbsp of whole wheat flour)
176g water
54g stiff SD starter at 50% hydration straight from fridge
6g Kosher salt
502g approx dough yield

Canned crushed tomatoes
Fresh mozzarella (sliced and or diced)
Whole milk ricotta cheese (strained)
Fontina (sliced)
Radicchio - washed and shredded
2 eggs

Method:
12:15am - Mix all ingredients by hand in a mixing bowl until you get a shaggy dough.  Cover and let rest.
12:35am - Knead dough for a few seconds until it is smooth.  cover and let rest.
1:05am - Turn dough (stretch and fold) in bowl, lightly coat dough with olive oil, cover and let rise on counter overnight.
8:30am - Place baking stone with longest side parallel to the oven in the center of the bottom rack, preheat oven to 650F (turn oven on convection to 550F and preheat for one hour).  Place oven thermometer on stone to you can see the actual temp of the stone.
9:30am - Take thermometer out of oven.  Turn oven off convection.  On a floured work surface, stretch dough out to the size of the pizza peel, lightly flour peel.  Place pizza dough directly on baking stone and bake for 2 minutes.  Then, take pizza  crust out of oven, spread crushed tomatoes to the farthest edges.  Then on 1/3rd of the pizza, arrange the radicchio and fontina, on another 3rd, place the mozzarella, the final 1/3rd, place the ricotta.  In the center break 2 eggs.  Place pizza back into oven close to the left side of the stone for 3 1/2 minutes.  Scoot pizza over to right side of stone, bake for another 3 to 3 1/2 minutes or until the egg is cooked to your liking (slightly runny yolks).  Take pizza out, let cool for a minute or so, cut and eat.


Notes: Placing the pizza close to the edges of the stone allow the crust to receive the maximum amount of heat radiating from the bottom of the oven, so it chars like a wood or coal fired oven.  Moving the pizza from each side allows both sides of the crust to char.

Prebaking the crust avoids the wet soggy crust under the toppings, and also makes the pizza easier to place into the oven without risking the dough sticking to the peel, or the sauce and toppings weighing down the crust.

tssaweber's picture
tssaweber

Update to my earlier blog: http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/23735/did-i-hit-jackpot

Even Pizza tournes out great:

Happy baking!

Thomas

 

 

Floydm's picture
Floydm

I had a busy weekend and did not bake this weekend.  First time in quite some time, actually.

I don't think I ever posted the BBQ Chicken Pizza I made during the Super Bowl.

super bowl pizza

The crust is Peter's Neo-Neapolitan recipe that is my standard.  Cheap store-brand BBQ sauce as the sauce, chicken breast, cilantro, red onions, and a mixture of chedder and mozarella. Super simple and the kids loved it.

super bowl pizza

I made Current Cream Buns that weekend too but they got gobbled up before I could take a picture.

The other thing I've been making recently are Crepes.  Our new favorite filling is a pat of butter, a scant teaspoon of sugar, and a good squeeze of fresh lemon juice.  Super simple but absolutely delicious!

 

 

mrosen814's picture

Neo-Neapolitan Pizza from Reinhart's "American Pie"

January 14, 2011 - 10:46am -- mrosen814

I tried out Peter Reinhart's Neo-Neapolitan pizza recipe from his book, "American Pie."

This made a very delicious crust with a nice chew.

Toppings:

* Organic diced tomatoes (canned) 

* Fresh oregano from the garden

* Chili flakes

* Pancetta

* Fresh mozzarella 

* Olive oil 

* Salt

* Pepper 

Here are a couple pics!

Pizza - Before the oven

copyu's picture

Interesting American-Italian cooking videos...

December 30, 2010 - 8:09am -- copyu
Forums: 

...including home-made pizza!

I normally don't like video instruction for cooking or baking, but "Gianni's North Beach" is an exceptional series of videos which are quite well produced, of 'Gianni' making various classic Italian dishes in a casual, yet confident manner. Measurements are few to non-existent, but he explains what he is doing very well and also gives great warnings about the pitfalls to avoid

I spent a couple of hours of real fun watching these videos and I also picked up a few great cooking tips. I include the link to "Pizza Margherita" below

Ryan Sandler's picture

How big of a pizza can you bake in a home oven?

December 18, 2010 - 7:49pm -- Ryan Sandler

It is once again Christmas time, and once again I'm volunteering to bake pizzas on Christmas eve for my parents and in-laws.  Last year I baked a series of 7 personal-size pizzas on three stones in two ovens, with generally successful results.  This year my mother-in-law has requested/suggested making somewhat larger pizzas.

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