I've always loved pizza! I mean, who doesn't? But my love for pizza has gone to a whole new level since we started making our own. I got Brandon the book My Pizza for Christmas. Since then, we have been making pizza like it's our second job. We've been trying different toppings and working on ways to perfect the crust, sauce, cheese, etc. It's a fun way to be creative and now we love to invite friends over for "pizza night."
The process didn't start out pretty, but we've learned several tips along the way....
- Don't roll out the dough! We use the dough recipe from the book (I included it below) and you actually prepare it 18 hours before you make pizza. So we make the dough the night before we have pizza.
- Simple sauces. I always thought a lot of ingredients went into making a pizza sauce but basically the best sauce includes tomatoes, olive oil, and some sea salt. We also like to use a white alfredo sauce and a pesto sauce.
- Limit your pizza to 3 toppings. I think we have a tendency to think that more is better, but by limiting your pizza to 3 or less toppings you can actually taste and enjoy the flavors of each one.
- Use fresh toppings. The pizza tastes so much better and you'll feel like you're eating a pizza from Rome not Pizza Hut:) I'll be sharing some of our favorite combinations and toppings in another post but you can see a few of them below.
- Use fresh mozzarella. This is a big one and takes your pizza from average to phenomenal! We like to break ours into small pieces so it melts easier.
- Use a pizza stone or clay tiles. After looking for the perfect pizza stone, we actually read on the internet about using unglazed clay tiles from Home Depot. We weren't quite sure, but decided to try it and it works great! Plus, they are way cheaper than pizza stones and won't crack (like a lot of pizza stones do).
- Hot temperatures. We actually heat our oven to 500 degrees with the pizza stone in it, but when we go to bake the pizzas we switch it over to broil to achieve that perfect crispy, yet slightly, chewy crust.
- Use a pizza peel. Using a pizza peel makes it easy to transfer the unbaked pizza into the hot oven without everything falling apart. We like and use this one.
Pizza Dough Recipe (from My Pizza)
3 3/4 cups all purpose flour, plus more for shaping the dough
1/4 tsp active dry yeast
2 tsp fine sea salt1 1/2 cups water
Mix the dry ingredients and then add the water. Mix (we use a mixer) until it forms into a ball. Cover and let it sit for 18 hours or until double in size. Makes about 4 pizzas.