easy pizza dough
~1 1/8 cup water
1 T maple syrup
1 1/2 T olive oil
~1 1/8 t salt
2 cups bread flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 T vital wheat gluten (optional)
1 3/4 t instant yeast
cornmeal (for the base of the crust; optional)
1 t granulated garlic (optional; if you want a garlicky crust; don’t add too much or the dough won’t rise well)
I use a bread maker to knead the dough, so add all ingredients (except for cornmeal) in the order recommended by the manufacturer. If kneading the dough by hand, mix all ingredients (except for cornmeal) in a bowl and then knead on a lightly floured surface. The exact proportions of water and flour needed can vary based on the room temperature, humidity and other factors, so it’s better to not worry too much about exact proportions and rather go for a dough ball that’s smooth, elastic and not too sticky.
Split the dough into three equal parts. Place one part in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Freeze the two remaining pieces in individual lightly oiled Ziploc bags for later use.
Let the dough rise until tripled in size (~1 hour, depending on how warm your kitchen is). If you’re starting with one of the frozen pieces, thaw on the countertop for ~30 minutes, knead for a minute or two, and then proceed as with fresh dough.
Gently deflate the risen dough, and then allow to again triple in size.
After the second rising, gently roll out to a 12 inch round on a lightly oiled surface.
Lightly oil a 12 inch pizza pan, sprinkle with cornmeal if desired, and place the rolled out pizza dough on it.
Prick the dough with a fork, cover with a lightly oiled sheet of plastic wrap or wax paper.
Let rise for 30-40 minutes or until about doubled in thickness.
Bake in a preheated oven at 450°F for 7-9 minutes until the crust is golden brown.
Top with your favorite toppings and continue baking for another 5-8 minutes or until the cheese along the edges begins to brown.
Let cool for 10 minutes before cutting.
© Frank K. Mazdab