It Gets Better: Pizza, No-knead-style.

A few weeks ago, all we wanted to eat for dinner was no-knead bread. So that’s exactly what we did. And though it really is great bread, we may have overindulged a bit (five loaves in one week isn’t too much, is it?). By the time the next week rolled around, we figured it was time for a change. 

So we made pizza.

Using a dough recipe that’s pretty much the twin of the no-knead bread recipe

Three times. 

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(We’re an adventurous bunch, hey?)
 
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The result: a crust that manages to be simultaneously crispy and chewy, and is so flavourful that you’ll wonder why you ever ordered take-out. 

Oh yeah, and just like the bread, this is dead easy

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The pizza dough recipe is just a tiny bit different from the bread recipe, so I’m going to give it you below. I’ll also share with you a few topping suggestions, including our hands-down favourite!

No-knead pizza dough
Adapted from tastingtable.com, where it was adapted from Jim Lahey, Co. 
Makes 3-4 medium pizzas (see note below)

Ingredients
3 cups all purpose flour
¼ tsp instant yeast
1½ tsp salt
1½ cups warm water

Directions
1. Whisk the first three ingredients together in a large bowl. Pour in water and stir until combined (dough will be sticky). Cover with plastic wrap and let rise at warm room temperature for 12 - 24 hours. 
2. After dough has rested, transfer to a lightly floured work surface. Dust dough with bit of flour and fold over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let dough rest for 15 minutes.
3. Divide dough into 4 pieces* and shape each piece into a ball. Place on a well-floured surface and cover with a well-floured cotton towel**. Let rise for 2 hours. 
4. Stretch, toss, or roll each ball out to be about 12 inches wide. Add toppings and bake in a preheated oven on top of a very hot pizza stone***.

*I divided it into 3 pieces to make slightly larger (~13 inch), thicker-crusted pizzas.
**I cover the dough loosely with plastic wrap and then an unfloured towel. 
***We don’t have a pizza stone, so we use a heavy baking sheet that’s been heated for 5 minutes in a 500°F oven. We roll the dough out on cormeal-dusted parchment, add the toppings, and transfer the whole thing (parchment and pizza) to the hot pan (much easier than trying to transfer a floppy, uncooked pizza!). We baked the pizzas in the photos at 500°F for 10-15 minutes or until the crust browned and the toppings looked tasty. We found that the toppings cooked a bit too quickly and the crust browned too slowly at 500°F, so next time we’ll try it at 450°F. 

Topping Suggestions 

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With this dough, it’s best to go easy on the toppings - this’ll keep the crust crisp and let its great flavour come through. Here are a few combinations that we really liked:

Roasted garlic + zucchini + parmesean + chilis (our favourite!)
- Smush together one head of roasted garlic (or 6 cloves of fresh garlic, bashed or whizzed to a paste) with a large pinch of salt and 2 tsp olive oil. Spread evenly over dough. single layer of thinly-sliced zucchini (~1 small zucchini). Add a light drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle each of salt and dried chili flakes, and a small handfull of good quality grated parmesan cheese. Bake.

Margherita
- Spread a thin layer of tomato sauce over dough. Top with a small handful of fresh basil and a bit of fresh mozzarella (sliced-1/8 inch thin or torn - a little will go a long way!). Sprinkle with a pinch or two of salt. Bake. 

Reverse Margherita (not the official name, but that’s how I think of it)
- Spread a thin layer of good pesto over dough, leaving a bit of an edge. Top with thinly-sliced fresh tomatoes, a small handful of fresh basil, and a bit of fresh mozzarella (sliced 1/8-inch thin or torn - a little will go a long way!). Sprinkle with a pinch or two of salt. Bake.


Pizza is on the menu again this week, and we’re looking for some new topping ideas!

What are your favourite pizza toppings? : )

 

 

 

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