I have always loved making pizzas but always bought pizza dough or crusts from the grocery, baking the pizza on a baking sheet or directly on the oven rack.
Oh how things have quickly changed! We registered for and received a pizza stone as a wedding gift and used it for the first time this week. Addicted. To think that I almost didn't keep this pizza gem from heaven, letting my sister talk me into keeping it, was a joke.
I decided to make my own pizza dough for the first time (super easy) and I don't think I'll ever go back. You must try!
For the pizza crust (makes two - note that it's best for the dough to stay refrigerated for 24-48 hours before baking):
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp Active Dry or instant yeast
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
For the pizza (makes one):
- 1 pear (I used a delicious Harry & David pear, mentioned here)
- provolone cheese
- gorgonzola cheese
- chopped walnuts
Pour 1 1/2 cups warm water into a bowl and sprinkle 1 tsp yeast over the water. Combine flour and salt in a mixing bowl (my first opportunity to use our new KitchenAid mixer!) and slowly begin mixing the flour while pouring in the olive oil. Once mixed, pour in the water/yeast mixture and mix together until just combined.
Take the dough and form into a round ball and place in a medium bowl.
VERY important! Cover the bowl tightly with saran wrap and leave in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours, 48 if possible.
24 hours later...
If using a pizza stone, place the room temperature stone in the oven. Let the pizza stone warm up with the oven -- if you place it in a hot oven it could crack. Once you have the stone in the oven, preheat to 450.
Talk half of the dough and hold and stretch it to a circle. Drizzle a small amount of olive oil on the dough and layer the provolone over the dough. Add the pear slices, walnuts and gorgonzola cheese and place in the oven for 8-10 minutes.
Maybe my favorite pizza ever.
Then you can make another pizza for your carnivore husband or kids with leftover hanger steak. At least this way you can have this pizza all to yourself!