Pizza Crust

A simple dough; this recipe makes enough for 2 x 14 inch pizza bases, or 4 x 10 inch ones.

Use for Pizza Whirls.

Ingredients

  • By weight
    • 12oz/350g strong white flour
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1 tsp dried yeast (or one sachet instant yeast – follow the packet instructions)
    • 225ml warm water (lukewarm)
    • 1 tbsp vegetable or olive oil
  • By cup
    • 3 cups strong white flour
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1 tsp dried yeast (or one sachet instant yeast – follow the packet instructions)
    • 1 cup warm water (lukewarm)
    • 1 tbsp vegetable or olive oil

Method 1 – making the dough “all-in-one”

  1. Sprinkle the dried yeast on the lukewarm water in a mug; leave for 10-15 minutes. Take a large bowl, and add the flour, salt, and oil; mix well. Add the yeast mixture.
    • Or, if you are using a sachet of instant yeast, add all the dry ingredients to your bowl, sprinkle on the sachet contents, and add the lukewarm water.
  2. Work to a very smooth and elastic dough. Knead for a good 10 minutes. Try to avoid adding more flour than is really necessary – it should be softer than a basic bread dough.
  3. Divide the dough in half or quarters, work into smooth balls, and allow to rise on a lightly oiled baking sheet, covered, until the balls have doubled in volume (at least an hour).
  4. Preheat your oven to 220C/425F/Gas Mark 7.
  5. Take a ball of dough, and roll into a circle on a floured surface. Stretch to 14 inches across (for 2 pizzas), or 10 inches across (for 4 pizzas). Your call – flip and rotate in your hands like professionals, or just roll/push/pull on your work surface.
  6. Place in lightly oiled pizza pans or baking sheets. Neaten and/or raise the edges. Brush with olive oil and add toppings of your choice. (Pizza dough doesn’t need a second rise.)
  7. Bake until ready – about 10-12 minutes.
    • A wee note – if your oven is like mine (not so good at keeping the temperature high enough), then part bake the crusts until lightly browned (a bare 10 minutes) – and then spread with your sauce and toppings. Return to the oven for 10-12 minutes.

Method 2 – using a “sponge” to create the dough

  • Mix together in a small bowl ½ cup of the water, 1 cup of the flour, and 1/8 teaspoon dried yeast – yup, that tiny quantity! Leave it in the kitchen for about 8 hours, covered with clingfilm.
  • Transfer the sponge to a large mixing bowl, and add the remaining flour, salt, the second cup of water (lukewarm), and 1 teaspoon dried yeast. Work into a soft dough – you may need to add extra flour or water.
  • Turn out on to a floured surface, and knead well until the dough is supple, soft, and elastic. Divide the dough into 4 equal portions, and form in to smooth balls. Place on an oiled baking sheet, cover, and leave to rise until they have doubled in size (at least an hour).
  • And continue as above.Freezing?
    • Save time – double the quantities, and freeze half for use later. Just divide the dough in two, wrap, and freeze. When you want it, let the dough defrost and come back to room temperature.
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