My family loves this pizza recipe, which is a hodge-podge of several different recipes I've come across. It is time-consuming and family affair with lots of little tasks to delegate: cheese grating, vegetable slicing, pepperoni placing. You get the idea. It is definitely a weekend-only activity at our house, and I've been known to structure the weekend around it!
Ingredients: Dough: 1 tablespoon dry yeast 1 1/2 cups warm water (105-115F) 3 1/2 cups white flour OR 1 1/2 cups white flour AND 2 cups whole wheat flour 1/2 teaspoon salt 2 tablespoons olive oil Sauce: 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 2-pound can whole or crushed tomatoes 3/4 teaspoon dried oregano 1/4 teaspoon dried basil 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon pepper
Prepare the dough at least two hours before you assemble the pizzas. Mix yeast and water in a large bowl; place in warm spot for about five minutes. Sift flour and salt into the yeast. Mix well, then add olive oil and form a soft ball. Knead on floured surface until soft and elastic (about five minutes). Shape into ball and place in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with a clean towel and place in a warm spot for about one hour. Punch down dough and reshape into ball. Cover and let sit another 20 minutes, or until it rises again. Punch down again. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Pour olive oil into large skillet and place over medium heat. Add tomatoes to the warm olive oil with the remaining ingredients, crushing whole tomatoes with your hands as you add them to the pan. Cook over medium-low heat, breaking up tomatoes with wooden spoon, until the sauce is thick, 40-50 minutes.
Putting it all together
Roll out the dough and place on cookie sheets or pizza pans sprinkled with cornmeal. There is enough dough for two large thin crust pizzas. Pinch a lip along the edges. Top with sauce, cheese and your choice of pizza toppings, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with basil. Bake in 450F oven for 12 minutes. We make this pizza with a thin wheat crust, which is crisp and slightly nutty sweet after baking, but with this recipe you can make the crust according to your preference. Our favorite toppings include caramelized onions, sliced tomatoes, pepperoni, spinach and freshly grated mozzarella cheese (packaged grated cheese is fine, of course, but just doesn't seem the same to us). When this pizza is hot and fresh out of the oven, there is not a store-made pizza that can compare. What we especially like about it the fact that it is hardly greasy, in spite of (or due to) all of the olive oil we use in the recipe. I hope you enjoy this as much as we do! Most of the day