Homemade Pizza!


My favorite boy toy and I made homemade pizza for supper.  Yum!  We even made the pizza dough from scratch.  We had fun, it tasted good, and it was a nice change of pace for our supper.  Shall I make you drool?

Several  years ago, Mother Earth News had an article with a new idea of making bread in five minutes a day.  I’ve since bought both cookbooks by the authors, Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë François.  The first one is about making artisan breads (similar to the premium breads you buy at the stores) and the other uses whole grains.  The technique is pretty straightforward, using a “wet dough” that is refrigerated and cooked as needed.

Last weekend, I made up a batch of it to try some sandwich rolls for the spiral ham that we cooked.  I used a whole grain recipe, with white whole wheat flour from King Arthur as a substitute for the whole wheat flour.  Instead of measuring the flour, I weighed it.  The five minutes a day technique doesn’t knead the bread and I felt the weighing would give a better result since there is no “feel” as to when the dough is right.  This recipe used eggs and oil, so it was a bit softer than usual but also very flavorful.

After baking it briefly in the oven, we let it cool for a few minutes.  As you can see, it’s a bit thick.  If we keep doing this, we will have to practice rolling it thinner.  On the other hand, it was no thicker than the thick crust pizzas we get at the restaurant.  I was hesitant to use too much flour to roll it out, which was a mistake.  This is something that can be improved with practice.

Pizza crust cooked briefly and cooling

For toppings, we used a 1/2 jar of pre-made Prego sauce.  We sprinkled on some parmesan cheese, then topped the pizza with cooked green pepper, onions, and some leftover turkey.  The kitchen filled with canine volunteers to see if the turkey was still good to eat.  They were also chased out, much to their disappointment.

We finished off the pizza with mozzarella cheese and popped it in the oven for a little over ten minutes.

Not bad for our first effort in a long, long time!

We let it rest for a few minutes to make it easier to cut and then enjoyed the result of our efforts.  It was delicious, moderate in fat and calories, and blood sugar friendly between the whole wheat crust and the turkey for protein.

Since the oven was already heated up, I made a few more rolls for our lunches.  The first ones I made last weekend were too small and overcooked.  Tonight’s are a little too big.  I’m going to have to experiment with weighing the dough to figure out how much is needed for a decent sized roll.  I also didn’t flatten them enough; they look more like mini-loaves of bread instead of a sandwich roll.  Once again, there’s a learning curve here.  All it takes is some more practice.

I can't wait to try them!

I use an instant thermometer to tell when my bread is done.  Most loaves are done at between 170 to 180 degrees.  That was too much for the rolls, but I don’t know yet what is the right temperature.  Tonight I took them out at 160 degrees.  I’ll find out tomorrow is that worked.  If they’re undercooked, they can be toasted.

Our homemade pizzas are usually on a Boboli crust which is convenient but not very tasty.  This was fun tonight to try a homemade crust and it was so much better too!  It wasn’t hard to do, especially with the made ahead bread dough.  Clearly we need some practice – awwww, we have to make more pizza.  Isn’t that just too bad!