Pizza dough

This recipe comes from my latest book, National Trust Simply Baking. Uncooked pizza dough freezes very well.  This is a classic pizza dough recipe, but you can blend different flours into the white flour, such as a quarter rye or whole-meal flour to add different flavours.  I always cook for 2 so remember that you’ll only need half of this per pizza recipe on my website.

Serves 4

225ml/8fl oz lukewarm water

2 teaspoons fast action dried yeast

400g/14oz unbleached strong flour

1 teaspoon fine sea salt

Place 3 tablespoons of lukewarm water into a small bowl.  Sprinkle the yeast over its surface. Mix slightly with your finger.   Measure the flour into a large mixing bowl. Once the yeast has dissolved into a froth, mix thoroughly. Add 2 tablespoons flour from the bowl of the measured flour and stir until it forms a smooth paste.  Leave to rise for 30 minutes. 

Mix the salt into the remaining flour.  Pour in the yeast mixture.  Add 225ml/8fl oz lukewarm water to the empty yeast bowl and tip into the flour and yeast mixture.  Using your hands, mix together and once it forms a dough, turn on to a clean surface. 

Knead thoroughly for 10 minutes.  Once the dough is silky smooth and elastic, divide into four evenly sized balls.  Place on a floured sheet.  If possible, encase in an inflated clean plastic bag, otherwise, cover with a clean tea towel.  Leave in the kitchen for 2 hours, or until they’ve doubled in size. 

When you’re ready to bake – set your oven to it’s highest setting, which is usually around 240°C/gas 9.  Peel off the clingfilm and take the first ball.  Knead for 2 minutes, then using the palm of your hand, press out and flatten into a thin, round circle.  You can use a small rolling pin to make it really thin, but press your knuckles just inside the edge to create a raised edge.  If you’re making a calzone, the edge should be slightly thicker.



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