This is a very simple base that will take some practice to perfect, unless you already know how to toss a pizza. Two preparation methods are given to choose from: an overnight rise in the fridge and the more conventional sponge-rise approach.
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1 1/2 teaspoons dried active baking yeast
350ml (12 fl oz) water
375g (13 oz) plain flour
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
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Method Prep:30min › Cook:10min › Ready in:40min
FOR THE OVERNIGHT COLD RISE METHOD: In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Stir in half of the flour and salt; mix well. Stir in the remaining flour, a small handful at a time, beating well after each addition. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and supple, about 15 minutes. Place dough in bowl dusted with flour cover with cling film and refrigerate overnight.
SPONGE RISE METHOD: In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in 125ml water. Stir in 115g of flour; mix well. Cover bowl with cling film and let rise until foamy, about 1 hour. Blend in remaining water, flour and salt; beat well. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and supple, about 15 minutes. Place dough in bowl dusted with flour and cover with cling film. Let rise until doubled, about 2 to 3 hours.
Deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into two equal pieces. Roll dough out to half of its final size. Let rest for 10 to 15 minutes (while you prepare a pizza topping). Preheat oven to 230 degrees C/ gas mark 8.
Stretch out dough over your floured knuckles and spin/toss 2 to 3 times until desired size is achieved. Place dough on a lightly greased pizza pan or baking tray.
Spread pizza sauce and arrange toppings; bake in preheated oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Let baked pizza cool for 5 minutes before serving.
This really is a wonderful rustic pizza base, my family were just so delighted with this. In fact my husband even said it was like a pizza from a good Italian restaurant (What a compliment). I used the sponge rise method, let my kitchenaid do all the mixing and kneading. I covered the dough and let rise in my small side oven with the light on for just over an hour (always works a treat, for any yeast based dough that I make). Made a large square pizza (well squarish anyway!!!) and did the four seasons toppings. A great throw together dinner this evening. Will certainly be using this dough again. Thank you for sharing.
12 Jan 2013