Saturday, September 14, 2013

Whole wheat crust pepperoni pizza


Pizza Dough: Makes  three medium pizzas 
1 cups warm water
1 package (2 teaspoons) of active dry yeast
2 cups whole wheat
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tbsp olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon sugar

Pizza Ingredients 
Olive oil
Parchment paper (to slide the pizza onto the pizza stone)
Tomato sauce (puree) or marinara sauce
Mozzarella cheese, shredded
Parmesan cheese


In a bowl add the warm water. Sprinkle on the yeast and let that sit for 5 minutes until the yeast is dissolved. Stir to dissolve completely if needed at the end of 5 minutes.

In a large bowl mix in the olive oil, flour, wheat, salt and sugar.  Add water to the flour mix and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. If the dough seems a little too wet, sprinkle on a bit more flour.

Place ball of dough in a bowl that has been coated lightly with olive oil. Turn the dough around in the bowl so that it gets coated with the oil. Cover with damp cloth. Let sit in a warm place until it doubles in size, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours. After 1 hour remove the damp cloth from the dough and punch the dough down so it deflates a bit. Divide the dough in three parts. Form round balls of dough. Place each in its own bowl, cover with damp cloth and let sit for another 1 hour (or several hours longer, a longer rise will improve the flavor). If you don't have a warm spot in the house you can heat the oven to 150 degrees, and then turn off the oven. Let the oven cool till it is just a little warm, and then place the bowl of dough in this warmed oven to rise.

At this point, if you want to make ahead, you can freeze the dough in an airtight container for up to two weeks.

Preparing the Pizzas

Place a pizza stone on a rack in the lower third of your oven. Preheat the oven to 450°F .
Prepare your desired toppings. Today I am only using pepperoni. Note that you are not going to want to load up each pizza with a lot of toppings as the crust will end up not crisp that way. About a third a cup each of tomato sauce and cheese would be sufficient for one pizza. 

Working one ball of dough at a time, take one ball of dough and flatten it with your hands on a slightly floured work surface. Starting at the center and working outwards, use your fingertips to press the dough to 1/2-inch thick. Turn and stretch the dough until it will not stretch further. Else roll the dough with a pizza roller. Use your palm to flatten the edge of the dough where it is thicker. You can pinch the very edges if you want to form a lip.

Brush the top of the dough with olive oil (to prevent it from getting soggy from the toppings). Use your finger tips to press down and make dents along the surface of the dough to prevent bubbling. Let rest another 5 minutes.
Transfer prepared flattened dough to the parchment paper.  

Spoon on the tomato sauce, sprinkle with cheese, and place your desired toppings on the pizza.
Place the parchment paper gently on the pizza stone. Bake pizza one at a time until the crust is browned and the cheese is golden, about 10-15 minutes. If you want, toward the end of the cooking time you can sprinkle on a little more Parmesan cheese.