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How to cook Pizza at Home
Pizza dough (same as bread dough):
- Prepare the dough by mixing together (with the aid of a bread a machine or a mixer)
- 1 and ½ cup of warm water
- 1 and ½ tea spoon of salt
- 1 and ½ tea spoon of yeast
- 3 cups of flour
Wait about 2 hours to rise and you have your pizza dough
Since I assume most of us do not have a wood firebrick oven in the house. The next best thing is the use of a pizza stone in a normal oven. I have my pizza stone for over 10 years and I use it to make nice crusty breads (bread does not cook well in a bread machine).
The pizza stone will retain heat from the oven and cook the pizza fast without the need for fattening oils etc - So when baking you don't need a greased pan. Just put the dough on the pizza stone. The pizza stone also helps distributing the heat evenly on the pizza and the material ( terracotta) being porous absorbs moister from the crust making it crispy. The crust will come out dry and 'crusty' ( The pizza stone can be used to make excellent bread as well )
I had my pizza stone specially made to fit my oven and it is larger and thicker then the one commercially available so it really makes almost a wood-oven class pizza
Ok use either good canned tomatoes (Just tomatoes - not any pre-prepared sauces) or fresh tomatoes if they are available - You can even mix them together - put them in a food processor and chop them.
Put the mozzarella in the food processor so you will be able to spread it over the pizza.
Now use the rolling pin to make a thin layer of pizza crust. What I do now, it sounds a little strange but it helps a lot, put the raw pizza (the pizza crust that you just rolled out) by itself in the oven for just 1 minute (Reason: if the crust is too soft is very difficult to add tomatoes etc without ruining it) - After 1 minute remove the pizza dough and apply the tomatoes, mozzarella and fresh basil. Place the pizza in the oven for about 5 / 6 minutes 'till all the mozzarella is nicely melted. Take it out of the oven and serve. What is nice about this pizza is the unexpected different authentic Italian taste - also there are no greases oils or addictive of any type ( like powder garlic so popular in the Italian American food tradition but never used in Italy - so you are not allowed to use it). Anyway, after you practice with a few pizzas I might even give you the permission to try it with different toppings :-)
Some of my preferred toppings include rughetta ( arugola) and mozzarella with cherry tomatoes, radicchio and goat cheese, radicchio and green cheese or gorgonzola, red pizza with anchovies and mozzarella