Pizza: The Quest for the Perfect Pizza Recipe

Saturday, June 28, 2014

The quest for the perfect pizza recipe.

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like pizza. Seriously. Even the lactose-intolerant friends will sacrifice their tolerance for the simple pleasure of eating a slice (or two…or three) of pizza.

Pizza is that good.

In my favorite book (yes, Eat. Pray. Love. reference again), Elizabeth Gilbert goes to a pizza place in Naples during her stay in Italy, and claims the experience was so mindblowingly amazing it was practically life-changing. 

So, naturally, I made it my mission to find the perfect pizza recipe.

I’m a big fan of DIY. I won’t buy anything I think I can make myself. I’m also a huge fan of experimentation, especially when it comes to the kitchen. Therefore, I knew with enough dedication and experimentation, I could create a pizza recipe that I would never tire of making (or eating, of course).

After much trial and taste-testing, this is what I finally came up with. Enjoy!

2 Cups regular all-purpose flour (unbleached or whole wheat work as well, if you want to go healthy)
1 cup warm water (possibly more or less, depending on the flour type)
½ teaspoon salt (a pinch if using sea salt)
1 4oz jar of pizza sauce (spaghetti sauce also works)
Toppings of choice (I use a few handfuls of mozzarella cheese, a sprinkle of paprika, a cap-full of minced garlic, basil flakes, and parmesan cheese. If I’m feeling particularly healthy, I’ll put a layer of spinach underneath the cheese.)

Heat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mix the flour, salt, and water into a large plastic mixing bowl (metal and glass will be harder to wash because the mixture will harden onto the sides). I suggest adding the water a little at a time until the mixture is pliable and only slightly sticky (it shouldn’t stick to your hands).

After kneading the dough for five minutes, let it rest while you prepare the pan. I use a circular pizza pan, but any pan will work. Just make sure you coat the pan evenly with olive oil (or any type of oil really, just not butter).

Fit the dough to the pan, spreading it out to the texture you like. The dough won’t rise so if you want thicker crust, make sure you spread it out less.

Add the pizza sauce and your toppings of choice.

Cook for ten minutes or until the cheese has fully melted.

Slice and enjoy!

The texture of the crust turns out to be chewy in the best way possible. Even if you spread it really thin, it retains the perfect soft - not crunchy - texture without also falling apart in your hands. You can experiment with various toppings and sauces too. I once made a cheese pizza using barbecue sauce (we were out of pizza sauce), and mozzarella cheese. It was pretty epic.

Now, it’s your turn to enjoy this lovely pizza experiment.

Let the epic pizza making begin!

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