I am sure glad we didn’t wait to have our friends over to watch a Portland Trailblazers playoff game. I made pizza, from scratch, for the occasion and we had some special release IPA from Hood River, Oregon.
The Blazers lost the game, and therefore did not advance to the next round in the playoffs.
Maybe next year!
I used to make pizza more often years ago, but we don’t eat cheese much anymore. I’ve made some great vegan pizza as well, without the vegan style “cheese”. To me, it tastes like plastic and also doesn’t really melt.
Making a crust is easy, the most time consuming part is letting the dough rise.
Crunchy Cornmeal Pizza dough:
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup cornmeal ( I like medium grind )
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup warm, not hot water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon sugar
1 envelope yeast
For the toppings:
shredded cheese (mozzarella, parmesan, whatever you like)
thinly sliced red onion
thinly sliced mushrooms, any kind
thinly sliced bell peppers (I like red because they are sweet)
tomato sauce (I cooked down one can of diced fire roasted tomatoes until most of the liquid evaporated)
artichoke hearts, olives, sliced tomatoes, etc.
It’s your pizza, add whatever toppings you like!
Dissolve yeast and sugar in the warm water and let sit until frothy and bubbly.
In a bowl, mix flour, cornmeal and salt.
When the yeast mixture is ready, add it to the flour along with the olive oil. Mix and them turn it out onto a floured board. Knead until soft and spongy. If it feel too sticky, add a tiny bit of flour; if it is too dry, add a tiny bit of water.
Once it is all nice and ready to rise, put the dough into a lightly oiled large bowl and rub a bit of oil all over the pizza dough. Cover with a clean towel, then let it rise until doubled in size. Punch it down, then let it rise again.
Preheat the oven to 425°.
Finally, lightly oil a pizza pan (mine has holes in it) and sprinkle some cornmeal over it.
Roll out the dough, stretch it and put it onto the pan.
Let it rest a few more minutes on the counter.
Sprinkle the dough lightly with some shredded cheese and then PREbake the crust on the lowest rack for about 10 minutes.
Remove from oven, add the tomato sauce, distribute the toppings and sprinkle with some more shredded cheese.
Put it back into the oven on the lowest rack, and bake for 20 to 30 minutes until the crust is nice and crispy.
Let it rest for about 5 minutes before cutting.