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PIZZA DOUGH

Fields of Greens: New Vegetarian Recipes From The Celebrated Greens Restaurant  - by Anne Somerville
This basic dough is perfectly delicious made with all white flour, but we like the earthy flavor the cornmeal and rye flour add. Be sure to soak the cornmeal in the milk; it needs the moisture to soften it. The milk enriches the dough, but if you prefer to make the dough without it, use the variation at the end of the recipe.

Makes One 15-Inch Pizza Or Two 9-Inch Pizzas

INGREDIENTS

    1½ teaspoons active dry yeast
    6 TB warm (110°F) water
    6 TB milk
    2 TB extra virgin olive oil
    1 TB fine cornmeal
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 TB rye flour
    About 1¾ cups unbleached white flour
    1 to 3 TB additional flour for rolling the dough
     

DIRECTIONS

Dissolve the yeast in the warm water and set aside in a warm place for 3 to 4 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the milk, oil, and cornmeal in a 1-quart bowl. Add the yeast mixture, then the salt and rye flour; mix well. Gradually add the white flour, making a soft, workable dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead for about 5 minutes, sprinkling in a little flour as necessary to keep the dough from sticking to the surface. Put the dough into an oiled bowl and turn it once so the surface is coated with oil. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and let the dough rise in a warm place until it has doubled in bulk, about 35 to 40 minutes.

Prepare the topping.

Preheat the oven to 500°F and heat the pizza stone, if you're using one, for 20 minutes.

To shape the pizza, first form the dough into 1 round ball or 2 equal-size smaller balls. Roll out on a floured surface, turning it regularly to keep a round shape. It should be about 1/8 inch thick, slightly thicker at the edges. Lay the dough on an oiled pizza pan or a well-floured wooden peel. Cover with the topping you have chosen. Bake the pizza on its pan or slide it onto the heated pizza stone.
 

VARIATION MADE WITHOUT MILK: We've replaced the milk by increasing the water and doubling the olive oil, which the flour easily absorbs. The additional oil makes a very soft, easy-to-work dough.

    1½ teaspoons active dry yeast
    10 TB warm (110°F) water
    1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
    1 TB fine cornmeal
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 TB rye flour
    About 1¾ cups unbleached white flow
    1 to 3 TB additional flour for rolling dough

Prepare and roll out the dough as directed.
 

TO FREEZE: Immediately after mixing the dough, form it into 1 or 2 balls and wrap tightly in 2 layers of plastic wrap. When you're ready to use the dough, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight, or set it in a warm place for 2 to 3 hours. Roll out as directed.

GARLIC OIL
We brush our rolled pizza dough with this garlic-infused oil before spreading on the topping—the garlic oil adds extra garlic flavor and forms a seal that helps protect the crust from moist toppings. To make it, finely chop a clove or two of garlic and cover generously with olive oil. Store garlic oil in a sealed container in the refrigerator and we it to saute or season other dishes.

 

 

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