We’d all be hard-pressed to find anyone who doesn’t, at least occasionally, like to indulge by ordering out for pizza. That’s because: pizza. is. delicious. True story.
Unfortunately, pizza is also surprisingly expensive. Especially for two teachers. Well, for one teacher and one unemployed, can’t-wait-to-be-finished-my-last-semester almost teacher. It’s not just the financial burden of the $25 pizza bill that is a deterrent for yours truly, but the nutritional sabotage that can be caused by that one little piece of pizza shop heaven. And, let’s be frank, I’m not just eating one piece of pizza. Not even close. But let’s not focus on the indecency of my virtually inhuman ability to polish off an entire pizza alone…that’d be bordering on embarrassing…
So, all things considered, it seems as though, for me, the cons outweigh the pros in this scenario. What a shame. Well, unless it’s 3:00 a.m. and I’m weaving my way down St. Laurent. THEN, and only then, are there more ticks in the pros column. Hey, call me ‘responsible’, but ya gotta nip that budding hangover in the bud before it has a chance to rear its not-so-pretty head.
But when the bars haven’t just closed, what’s a girl to do? I don’t have enough will power to cut pizza out of my culinary vocabulary completely, nor do I really have the desire to do so. There’s only one solution: to create delicious, crave-worthy, more nutritionally-responsible versions of a favoured order-out dinner.
And that is exactly what I have done. You’re welcome.
I have tried several pizza dough recipes and always find myself boomeranging back to this one:
Thin Crust Pizza with Whole Wheat Flour
Adapted from allrecipes
- 1 teaspoon white sugar
- 1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- cornmeal for dusting the pizza pan, if desired
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, dissolve sugar in warm water (it can’t be hot water or you’ll kill your lovely little yeast). Sprinkle yeast over the top, and let stand for about 10 minutes, until foamy.
- Stir the olive oil, salt, and the whole wheat flour into the yeast mixture, then turn on your stand mixer (equipped with the dough hook) to mix it until dough starts to come together. Knead the dough, adding the all-purpose flour a bit at a time, and continue kneading it until all of the flour has been absorbed, and the ball of dough becomes smooth, about 8-10 minutes (you can do all this by hand, if you don’t have a mixer). Place dough in an oiled bowl, and turn to coat the surface. Cover loosely with plastic wrap, and let stand in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
- When the dough is doubled, tip the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and divide into 2 pieces for 2 thin crusts (or leave the dough whole to make one thick crust). Form into a tight ball(s) and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Let rise for about 45 minutes, until doubled once again.
- Preheat your oven to 500 degrees F.
- Oil a pizza pan and dust it with cornmeal, if so desired.
- Roll a ball of dough with a rolling pin until it will not stretch any further. Then, drape it over both of your fists, and gently pull the edges outward, while rotating the crust. When the circle has reached the desired size, place on the prepared pizza pan.
- Bake the plain crust in the preheated oven for 5 minutes (this ensures a crispier, non-soggy pizza), remove, and turn the oven down to 425 degrees.
- Top pizza with your favorite toppings, such as sauce, cheese, meats, or vegetables.
- Bake for another 15 to 20 minutes (depending on thickness) in the preheated oven, until the crust is crisp and golden at the edges, and cheese is melted on the top.
Ideas for delicious pizza toppings are on their way in the near future. So stay tuned!
In the meantime, enjoy experimenting with your own pizza creations.