pizza

nothing beats homemade dough. and while having pizza at a parlor is almost always too little too fast, homemade pizza is a laborious process for which one must be prepared beforehand. a dough is a dough, and it needs time to rise, no matter what kind of yeast you use. and do not try to make too much, as it would yield an unmanageable amount which home ovens usually cannot handle

fleischmann makes three kinds of yeast: regular, rapid rise and pizza. the latter, which presumable reduces rising time to 20 minutes, is useless. your dough will become a crust, ie, a cracker like bottom for your toppings. if you enjoy the mixed textures of the bottom, from crusty on the outside, to mushy bread in the inside, without being fluffy, you will need a rapid rise yeast. the regular yeast is too much time without much gain when compared to the rapid rise version.

the recipe i use, paradoxically, is based upon the one on the backside of the fleischmann pizza yeast envelope. it is a good recipe, and adjustments can be made according to taste. use sugar (a tbsp) to feed the yeast (your pizza will not be sweet, i promise), warm water, a spoon of olive oil, for consistency, and i prefer bread flour over all purpose. raise the dough until twice the size and then knead gently before shaping your pizza dough. stretch it by hand, but if the dough does not help (believe me, it may be weather acting on the yeast), roll it with a pin. then play piano on the dough to create sulks. finally let it rest after shaped as the slight crust on the top of the dough will help prevent the sauce from soaking into it.

san marzano tomatos for the sauce. i like the brand cento, quart cans of peeled, mashed to leave some bits inside. and do not use too much or the pizza will become soggy. do not season your sauce. let the tomato taste speak for itself.

i do not like grated cheese, as thin slices give it a better consistency. one of the advantages of homemade pizza is you get to choose the toppings, so be creative and please your audience. use olive oil liberally. if cooking in a conventional oven, place it on the bottom rack or the top will burn. be careful not to burn the bottom, though.

P.S. – if you like aliche (anchovies) try making a pizza without cheese, placing the fish directly over the sauce.

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