Sometimes at the end of the week the diet goes out the window.
Not that I'm on a diet, but I try to keep my gastronomic adventures on a 'tight leash,' so to speak. My intense love of food is constantly at war with the desire to stay thin and fit. But at the end of a hard week, making something deliciously comforting really hits the spot. Making pizza at home sounds so impressive but the whole experience is satisfying. Making the dough, putting the pizza together....and eating it! Homemade pizza is sooo good.
Last night my friend A came over and we made pizza. I got the dough ready ahead of time in the bread machine. I love this recipe for whole wheat pizza dough; it's deeply flavorful, and healthful too. For this batch, I used a rosemary infused olive oil and the crust was deeply flavored with it, but you can use regular extra virgin olive oil.
Whole Wheat Pizza Dough
(makes 2 12-14 inch crusts)
1 1/3 cups water
1/4 cup rosemary olive oil
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose Flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons SAF yeast
Place all ingredients in the bread machine pan, and program for the dough cycle. Press start.
When the machine beeps at the end of the cycle, unplug the machine. Lightly flour your work surface, and your hands- the dough will be sticky when you pull it out. Immediately remove the pan from the machine, and turn the dough out onto the floured work surface. Divide into the desired number of portions. Flatten each portion into a disc by kneading a few times then folding the edges into the center. Cover with a damp paper towel on the work surface to rest for 30 minutes until the dough has increased about 20 percent in size.
Roll out and shape the dough according to your pizza recipe. Or, place dough in a plastic food storage bag and refrigerate for 24 hours, or freeze for up to 3 months.
A is a terrific pizza buddy. We had never cooked together before but we instantly danced in the kitchen- I rolled out the dough while she prepared the mushrooms and cheese. We have similar tastes in toppings, so we decided on a mushroom pizza with a spicy arrabbiata sauce. While preparing and eating, we shared a terrific bottle of Castle Rock Zinfandel.
1/2 recipe Whole Wheat Pizza Dough
3 large crimini mushrooms, sliced
4 cheeses, amounts to taste- part-skim mozzarella, fontina, parmesan, and asiago
your favorite Arrabbiata (spicy) tomato sauce (we used Scarpetta brand, available at Whole Foods)
Place a pizza stone on the bottom rack of your oven, and preheat to 475 degrees Fahrenheit.
Roll out pizza dough on a lightly floured work surface, to desired shape and size. Transfer to a baking sheet that has been lightly sprayed with olive oil and sprinkled with cornmeal. Spread a small amount of tomato sauce over the crust, leaving 1/2 inch around the edge. Sprinkle with cheese, and arrange mushrooms on top. Bake for 15-18 minutes, until the crust turns golden brown and the cheese bubbles. Transfer to wooden cutting board and sliced into 8-10 pieces. Store leftover pizza in tightly wrapped foil in the refrigerator.
The mushroom pizza paired with the delicious Zinfandel was delectable comfort food on a rainy chilly Friday. We had considered going out but were so glad we stayed in. Our pizza was deliciously satisfying comfort food without all the grease of delivery pizza. Plus, New Husband gets the leftovers for lunch today!