Meister’s Pizza / Bread Dough
(Makes 2 – 16″ pies / 4-6 calzones / 1 large loaf of bread or 2 small loaves)
- 2 cups hot tap water (hot enough to touch, but not too hot where it’s painfully hot. One day I’ll get a proper temperature)
- 5 teaspoons yeast / 2 packets (1/4oz ea)
- 3 teaspoons sea salt or kosher salt (table salt is ok, but sea and kosher makes it taste better)
- 4 cups of bread flour or unbleached flour (better quality flour yields a better rise and more fluffy bread / crust)
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil “EVOO” (if making rosemary bread, use infused rosemary olive oil if possible)
- 1-2 tablespoon semolina flour
- 1 tbsp crisco (for bread with with a bread tin)
- 2 tablespoon honey (for the bread recipe only – if used in pizza it will burn the crust at the 450º-470º temp)
Sauce: You can use marinara or Spaghetti sauce, but it does tend to be watery. You can reduce it down or make this killer recipe, Pizza Sauce Recipe.
1 – Yeast Salt Oil Optional Honey1) In a mixing bowl, combine salt, yeast and olive oil* (and honey if you are making bread). (photo 2) Turn the faucet on and get the water just got enough were you can barely touch it. Add water in the mixing bowl with the other ingredients and with a whisk, mix until everything is combined. Set timer for 10 minutes and allow yeast bloom. (5-6 minutes if you use honey) (photo 3 w/o honey)
* if you want a more crunchy crust, leave the olive oil out.
3 – Mixed with hot water
2) After 10 minutes, add one cup of flour to the mixing bowl. With the same whisk, mix in flour. Add the second cup of flour and mix again with the whisk. (photo 5) The consistency should be just like pancake batter. Now dump the third cup in and mix with a rubber scraping spatula. (photo 6) Mix in thoroughly scraping the sides of the bowl. It should be pretty thick at this point. With the fourth cup of four mix in a little at a time. (photo 7) Towards the end of the fourth cup transfer it to the table, and start kneading. You might not need the entire 4th cup, you’ll use the rest while kneading. You want the dough to be slightly sticky.
3) Knead the dough for about 5-10 minutes. (photo 7 & 8) If it gets sticky, sprinkle flour (from the 4th cup) and continue kneading. After awhile, It will start to get dry / not sticky, you can stop at this point. Don’t put too much flour in. If you do it will be too thick and the crust / bread will be very dense. At this point the inside of the dough should still be ever so slightly tacky.
At this point dust the dough ball with flour. You can cut it in half, wrap it in cling wrap and freeze it or put it in the refrigerator for tomorrow. I tuck in into a ball with a little more flour to keep it from sticking to the cling wrap. It will rise in the fridge or freezer, don’t worry about that. After you thaw it, the co2 will release from the dough naturally.
a) For very fluffy crust, this will rise and cook at the same time. After kneading, let it rest for 10 minutes, so it’s elastic not so dense and has some elasticity to it. Throw it into a pie, top and bake.
b) For regular crust let it rise! In a new bowl (or you can just clean the mixing bowl you just used) put a little bit of EVOO in the bowl. Coat the entire bowl with the all of oil. (photo 9 & 10) Put the dough in the bowl. With a tiny bit of extra-virgin olive oil brush the top of the dough so it’s coated on top. Now cover with a towel and let rise for about 60 minutes. It will double in size. This is what you do for bread as well.
After 60 minutes has gone by, your dough should be about double the size. (photo 11) Punch the dough to release the co2
These will make 2 – 14 to 16 inch pizzas. You can also preheat your oven to 450°-470° (depending on your oven) and cook it right away. (let it rest for 10 minutes before throwing or rolling out. If you don’t let it rest, it will be too elastic and will not hold its shape)
4. Bread: If you are making bread, let it rise in a greased bread tin, or for a french style loaf, roll it out to a roll after kneading and just leave it on a cookie sheet and let it rise. Put semolina flour on the sheet. After an hour you can put it directly in the oven. See instructions below.
If you do not have a pizza stone you can use a cookie sheet. Sprinkle semolina flour on your surface you are transferring it from. Do not use regular flour. It will burn. Pizza stones should be preheated minimum 45 minutes to cook the pie thoroughly. You can use a cookie sheet as a pizza peal to transfer it onto the preheated stone too.
With the regular flour roll out pizza dough with a rolling pin as flat as possible. If you have the know how, try and throw the dough like a pro, but the results will be the same either way.
Evenly, apply the semolina flour on the cookie sheet, then put the rolled / thrown dough on the cookie sheet. Top pizza with desired toppings.
If you do not have a pizza stone then use the cookie sheet and just put it in the oven like that. If you do a little twist and shake the cookie sheet quickly, this will allow the pizza to slightly move off the sheet and transfer it to the stone. It takes a little practice.
Pizza should take about 12-14 minutes to cook depending on how efficient your oven is.
You can roll into baguette, tennis ball sized ball for dinner rolls, Or all the dough on a cookie sheet or in a bread pan. Let rise for 60 minutes then put it directly in the oven for 25 minutes at 400º. To get a crispy crust, remove after 15 mins and brush with olive oil.
Cheese / Sausage bread:
After kneading roll out flat, add a generous amount of cheese and/or precooked pork sausage, roll into a log and let rise 30-60 minutes after kneading then put in the oven for 25 minutes at 400º. To get a crispy crust, remove after 15 mins and brush with olive oil.
Add 2 tbs of honey to the yeast and dry ingredients, before adding hot water. Add 2 tbs of dried rosemary. Add it in while you are mixing the first cup of flour.
Service Treat of the Week – November 14th, 2019 – Chocolate Chip Coconut Bars.
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