Pasta per Pizza
(Italian pizza dough)
This is your basic dough for any Neapolitan-style pizza. Use all-purpose flour for a more authentic, cracker-like crust for your pizza. Bread flour will give the dough more of a chew.
As with any yeast bread recipe, the exact amounts of flour, water and rising time are dependent on the day's weather. Follow your intuition.
Dough for 2 medium or 4 individual pizzas
- Active dry yeast -- 1 (1/4-ounce) packet
- Sugar -- pinch
- Lukewarm (110°F) water -- 1/4 cup
- Flour, bread or all-purpose -- 3 to 3 1/2 cups
- Salt -- 2 teaspoons
- Lukewarm (110°F) water -- 1 to 1 1/2 cups
- Olive oil -- 2 tablespoons
- Stir the yeast and sugar into the 1/4 cup warm water in a small bowl. Let set for about 10 minutes to activate the yeast.
- Pour yeast mixture into a large bowl. Pour 1 cup of the flour in with the yeast and mix together well with a wooden spoon. Add another 2 cups of the flour and about 1/2 of the remaining water. Mix together with your hands until it all comes together. Add more water as you mix it to form a smooth dough, not too sticky but not too dry. Add more flour or water as needed to get a good consistency.
- Remove to a lightly floured work surface and knead for another 8 to 10 minutes until smooth.
- Form into a ball. Wipe a large bowl with a little olive oil, place the dough in the bowl and flip the dough over to cover it with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a towel and place in a warm space to rise until doubled in size, anywhere from 1 to 3 hours.
- Punch the dough down with your fists and knead it lightly for another 2 or 3 minutes. Cut the into 2 or 4 pieces and form each piece into a ball. Cover the balls lightly with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm spot until doubled again in size.
- Roll out and use for any pizza recipe.
By Mixer with Dough Hook
- For Step 2 above, put all ingredients in the following order into the mixer bowl: yeast mixture, flour, water, salt, olive oil. Mix together for 8-10 minutes on medium speed until smooth. Add more flour or water as needed to get a good consistency.
- Remove dough from mixer and knead by hand 1 or 2 minutes. Proceed with Step 4 above.
By Food Processor
- For Step 2 above, put all ingredients in the following order into the processor bowl: yeast mixture, flour, water, salt, olive oil. Pulse machine until dough comes together in a large ball. This happens quickly. Add more flour or water as needed to get a good consistency.
- Remove dough from processor and knead by hand 1 or 2 minutes. Proceed with Step 4 above.
Pizza Dough Variations
- Whole-wheat Pizza Dough: Substitute 1/4 cup of the regular flour with whole-wheat flour. You may have to add a little more water.
- Herbed Pizza Dough: Add 1 or 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh herbs to the dough in Step 2 if you like: basil, oregano, parsley, rosemary.
- Freeze the dough after it is portioned into balls for later use. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and then set at room temperature to complete the second rise.