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Pizza Dough

Ingredients:

975 grams sifted hard red spring or red fife flour
700 grams of water (90-95 degrees F (Luke warm)
20 grams (1 TBS + 3/4 tsp) salt
2 grams (1/2 tsp) instant yeast

Method:

1.) Hydrate the yeast: Measure the 700 grams of water into a container. Put the yeast into a small bowl and take about 3 TBS of the water and mix it into the small bowl with the yeast. Set aside.

2.) Autolyse (combine flour and water): Combine the 975 grams of flour with the remaining water. Mix with your hand until incorporated. Cover and let rest for 30 minutes.

3.) Mix: Sprinkle the salt on top of the dough, add in the yeast and water. Fill a small bowl with water and place it near your workstation, this is for wetting your hands as you work the dough. Wet your hands (you can rewet them as necessary) and fold in the salt and yeast. Fold all of the dough on top of itself in a clockwise motion. Then squeeze it to really incorporate the ingredients. Continue this method of folding and squeezing a few more times to make sure that the salt and yeast are mixed in well.

4.)Fold: This dough needs about 3-4 folds. Folding the dough helps to develop the gluten strands and gives it strength and elasticity. You can see and feel the dough change while you fold. This is by far my favourite part of making dough. To fold the dough grab one quarter of the dough and stretch it up and fold it down across the dough. Then continue all the way around your dough and continue this method a few more times. Let rest about 15 minutes in between folds. You should be done folding your dough about 1 hour or 1.5 hours after mixing it. Lightly oil the dough and the bottom of the bowl so that it doesn’t stick. Then cover and let rest for approximately 6 hours.

5.) Divide: Flour a work surface, gently turn out the dough onto the surface. With floured hands pick up the dough and gently even it out so that you can make somewhat even cuts. Dust the top of the dough with flour. Cut into 5 equal pieces.

6.) Shape the dough into balls. Shape each piece into a tight ball. Place all 5 dough balls on a floured baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Let them rest at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Place in the fridge until ready to bake. The dough will keep approximately 3 days.

Pizza cooking method:

If you have a pizza oven this is the perfect recipe for that! If not, don’t fret! It is possible to get crispy thin pizza using your oven. It is ideal if you have a pizza stone.

1.) Preheat the pizza stone. Put your pizza stone in the upper portion of your oven (about 8 inches from the top broiler). Heat your oven as high as it will go (mine goes to 550) Leave it in there for about 30 minutes to really get the pizza stone hot.

2.)Prepare your pizza ingredients. Have everything ready to go so you can move quickly once the stone is ready.

3.) Roll out the dough and assemble the pizza. Gently shape the pizza dough on a floured surface (or cornmeal to help make it easier to slid off the pizza peel). You want the crust very thin with slightly thicker edges. If you have a pizza peel that is ideal, as you can prepare the pizza on there and then transfer onto the hot stone. If not I have used parchment paper before and then slid it onto the pizza stone. This takes a bit of practice so don’t worry if your pizza falls on the floor the first time (learned this from experience).

4.) Once your pizza is ready to go very very carefully take the pizza stone out of the oven (it will be very very hot) and slide your pizza onto it. You want to work quickly so the stone doesn’t lose any heat.

5.) Bake for 5 minutes, then switch to broil for 2 minutes. Watch carefully so that the pizza doesn’t burn.

Enjoy!