Pizza Dough

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Adapted from Basic Pizza Dough in James McNair's Vegetarian Pizza

  • 1 tbs sugar
  • 1 cup warm water (around 110° F)
  • 1 tbs active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups bread flour*
  • 2/3 cup - 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour** (depending on the humidity and density of flour)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

* Yes, it really should be bread flour. I really like the King Arthur Flour brand.

** This is available in my local King Soopers but if your grocery story doesn't carry it, a natural foods store probably will.

Note: This method assumes you're using a powerful stand mixer such as a "Heavy Duty" Kitchen Aid mixer. This can all be done by hand but expect a sore upper back if you're not use to kneading dough :)

Proof the yeast: Combine the water, yeast, and sugar and let sit for 5 minutes. At the end of 5 minutes, bubbles should have formed over the water. If not, start over with new yeast.

Add the oil and bread flour to the mixer and beat with the regular paddle on medium speed for about 5 minutes. Let the dough rest for about 5 minutes. Add in the salt and beat until combined. Change to the bread dough hook and continue mixing adding whole wheat flour until the bread is the right consistency (in general, pizza dough should be a bit wetter than what you'd look for in normal sandwich bread dough). Once dough is the correct consistency, turn out onto the counter and kneed a couple of times until dough feel very smooth and elastic. Shape into a ball and put in a greased bowl. Cover the bowl and set in a warm place until the dough has doubled (45 minutes - 1 1/2 hrs). After it has doubled, gently deflate the dough and turn out on the counter again. Kneed it once or twice, reform into a ball and put back into the covered bowl. Refrigerate until dough has doubled (another 45 minutes - 1 1/2 hrs). Once again turn dough out on the counter and kneed a couple of times before placing back in the bowl. (At this point, the dough can be wrapped in plastic wrap, put in a plastic freezer bag and stored in the freezer for several months. To use, let completely thaw either for several days in the refrigerator or several hours at room temperature.)

Place a pizza stone in the oven and preheat to 500° (you'll want to preheat the oven for at least 30 minutes, preferably 1 hr). Divide the dough in half and roll each half out to desired shape/size. Transfer the shaped pizza dough to greased aluminum foil and put on toppings (make sure you don't add too many toppings otherwise the pizza will be soggy). Slide the aluminum foil/pizza onto the back of a pizza pan to transfer to the oven. Slide the foil/pizza off the pizza pan and directly onto the pizza stone. Bake for around 10 minutes (though watch closely to make sure it doesn't burn). Once done, remove pizza from the oven (again the back of a pizza pan is helpful) and let sit for 5 minutes before cutting.

(I haven't included nutritional info for this as the dough itself is not the finished product and the toppings can dramatically affect the nutritional information.)