Monday, March 05, 2007

How To Make Your Own Blue Pizza

Alas, my blue pizza didn’t take the prize, but the dough was nevertheless a winner around my apartment. I’ve had terrible trouble finding/developing a pizza dough recipe that produces sufficiently thin, stretchy, chewy, and crispy crust in my regular old oven. Finally, I found the ONE. Jeffrey Steingarten’s recipe in It Must’ve Been Something I Ate. I should’ve known the curmudgeonly ex-lawyer would come to my rescue again.

Jeffrey Steingarten’s Pizza Recipe, but Blue

2 lbs (6.5 cups) flour, half all-purpose ubleached and half bread flour (preferably King Arthur brand, which is actually pretty tough to find in both Whole Foods and the dirty Gristedes on my corner).

1.5 tsp. active dry yeast (or 1.125 tsp. SAF-Instant yeast)
1Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. salt
3.25 cups cold water
Olive oil and cornmeal for oiling/dusting
Blue food coloring (fancy professional kind from Williams Sonoma)

I halved the recipe, making enough for two medium pizzas.

First, I added the food coloring to the water until I got a deep shade of turquoise. I combined the flours, yeast, salt and water in the bowl of my mixer, stirring by hand until they stuck together in a very messy shaggy dough. I mixed (using the paddle, not the dough hook) on low for one minute and then high for 3.5, as he recommends. My dough formed a very loose ball at this stage, which I plopped on a floured cutting board to rest for 10 minutes. I divided it in half (again, I only made a half recipe), formed two balls, and let each rise on an oiled plate, covered with oiled plastic wrap, for three hours. Then I let them rise for four more hours in the fridge. I removed one from the fridge, shaped the pizza carefully, using cornmeal on the bottom to prevent sticking, topped it with sauce, mozzarella, bacon and gorgonzola and cooked it on the pizza stone in a 500 degree oven for about 10 minutes. (I preheated the oven for at least a half hour so the pizza stone got quite hot, and I think my oven temp was actually closer to 550 degrees.) The crust was thin and crisp without being too crackery, and it had a chewy bite. My next experiment - does it freeze?


Blogger Jeff in NC said...

Bah, you was robbed!

7:44 PM  

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