My Pizza Obsession
I like to make pizza. I like to eat pizza. I like to make pizza as much as I like to eat pizza. My fascination with pizza probably started with those Pizza Hut vouchers my elementary school would pass out to the kids who made the honor roll. And being the bright, young, Asian, perfectionist I always had one of those vouchers.
Then I fell in love with Chuck-E-Cheese! My friends started having their birthday parties there and/or parents would take us there for play dates. You could have pizza and play games. Within that same time frame, my parents were avid fans of Roundtable Pizza. Oh my childhood pizza memories!!! They were amazing.
Fast forward to today, and I still have a special place for pizza. But since becoming a baking and cooking enthusiast, I’ve taken my love for pizza a notch higher; I bake pizzas from scratch. Folks forget that my parents owned a pizza joint for a few years. During those years, I’d play around with toppings, dough recipes, spices, and sauces. Similar to what I was doing in the shop, I do that in my small, dinky apartment kitchen with my trusty KitchenAid stand mixer.
I think there are two essential parts to a pizza – the dough and the sauce. I know lots of people like to over-do and complicate each of those. But pizza is really supposed to be simple!!! For my sauce, I crush some garlic and saute that with some extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) with salt, pepper, and italian seasoning. Once aromatic, I take a can of plum tomatoes and dump that into the pan with the garlic – juices and all. And that is it! That is my sauce.
For the dough, I have one go-to recipe for deep-dish, thin crust, regular and thick crust. To make the crust crunchy and thin, use half flour and half semolina flour. For deep-dish, regular, and thick crust stick with all-purpose (AP) flour. Are you ready? You’ll be amazed at how simple this is…
1. Mix the salt with the flour in a separate bowl.
2. Add the water, sugar & yeast to your stand mixer and mix a bit with a dough hook. The sugar acts as food for the yeast. You should see the yeast ‘activate’. Let it do its thing for a moment.
3. Slowly add flour, mixing it well before adding to the bowl. It’ll get stiff. If it’s still too sticky, add a little bit of flour at a time (perhaps by the Tbsp).
4. When the dough starts to form a slight ball, drizzle the EVOO in.
5. Lightly flour a bowl (or baking sheet), place the dough in the bowl (or sheet), and cover the dough with a towel. Let it rest for 30 minutes to an hour.
And there you have it – pizza sauce and dough. Hope your pizza turns out yummilicous!
‘Til the next time,