A few weeks ago I posted on my instagram that after three years of homemade pizza Fridays, I made a pizza that Philip claimed was as good as a pizza parlor. Being a pizza lover and a big time foodie, as well as a tough grader, this is seriously high praise. One of the best days of my life, as you can imagine.
So, after three years of trial and error, time to share my recipe.
Oh, but first things first. To make great pizza, you really need a pizza stone. I’ve made plenty of pizzas without a stone and they’re good, but amazing pizza is born right on that stone. Get one.
makes one 12″ pizza. double for a thicker crust or larger pizza
1/2 cup hot water (110-115 degrees)
1/2 Tbsp yeast
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup flour (I often do 1/2 white, 1/2 wheat, which is delicious, but full white flour makes the very best crust, in my opinion)
Combine water and yeast and wait five minutes while the yeast activates. Add salt and flour and mix until a soft dough forms. Knead in the mixer (or by hand) for five minutes, then cover and let rise for 20-30 minutes. In all honesty, I don’t always let it rise more than five minutes…it’s still great. Just a little lighter, fluffier, and crispier (on the bottom and crusts) if you let it rise the full 30 minutes.
slightly adapted from mels kitchen cafe. Makes enough for 4-5 12″ pizzas.
1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 small can tomato paste
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Combine all ingredients in food processor or blender and blend until desired consistency. Store in the fridge in an airtight container.
Heat your oven to 500 degrees (with the pizza stone on the lowest oven rack, or second to lowest if your lowest is super close to the bottom burner).
On a pizza paddle, or on the back of a cookie sheet, sprinkle some cornmeal, and then spread your pizza dough out on top of it. Top with pizza sauce and your desired toppings. We typically do mozzarella cheese, pepperoni, green peppers, mushrooms, jalapeños and fresh basil. Then we top it off with some freshly grated parmesan cheese.
Carefully slide the pizza off the paddle or cookie sheet and on to the stone. Cook for 10-12 minutes (Philip likes the crusts pretty crispy so we go the full 12 mins). Let it cool for about a minute, then cut and serve.