So it's a snow day here where I live. Blizzard conditions outside with blowing snow and cold temps. I'm off work for the day and had little else to do but conjure up something in the kitchen. I also don't have much in my fridge. But I seem to always have the necessities for baking: flour, yeast, salt, sugar, etc. So after scouring my pantry I decided to make pizza. From scratch.
It's not that difficult and here's my go-to pizza dough recipe:
1 1/2 tsb dry yeast
1/2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
Mix these together gently and let sit 10 mins until it starts to bubble.
Then, in a large bowl, mix together
3 1/2 cups flour (all purpose)
1 1/2 tsp salt
Pour the yeast mixture into the centre of the flour mixture. Start pulling in flour into the centre with a fork gently mixing as you go. Then add 1 egg, beaten, and continue to combine the mixture into a loose dough.
Once the mixture starts to just come together, dump it out onto a floured surface and knead it.
Kneading is simple enough and the best way is to press the dough, pull one side towards you and then double that onto the middle mass of dough. Turn the whole thing a 1/4 turn and repeat. Keep doing this for a couple minutes until the dough becomes smooth and can form a ball.
Put the ball of dough into a lightly oiled bowl and turn it around until it is lightly coated with oil. Cover with a dish towel or plastic wrap. You need to let this rise for about 45 minutes in a warm place. Once that's done, unwrap it, punch the dough down, knead it once more for a few minutes and it's ready to go.
You can stretch this dough with your hands or knuckles, flavour it with herbs, shape it into bread sticks or whatever you'd like. On this snowy day, I opted for one basic tomato sauce/peperoni/cheese pizza and one smaller basil pesto and tomato flat bread.
Making your own pizza dough is a little time consuming but you can take pride in it. It's relaxing and helps you take out your frustrations. Plus you can experiment with it: use whole wheat flour, flavour it, make it into different shapes, choose whatever toppings you like or have on hand, etc.
Not a bad way to spend time, or eat, on a snowy day.