When The Moon Hits Your Eye...
|Like a big pizza pie - THAT'S AMORE!|
It's been a very long time since I've blogged about my love for homemade pizza. Specifically my favorite great aunt's pizza. She's made this pizza for well over 50 years and everyone who has tried it, has loved it. The dough is thin and crisp, yet it's also got this amazing chew. It's got a great twang from the yeast and she knows exactly how much of each topping to put on so they all meld beautifully once the pie is brought from the oven. OHMYGOD smells SO GOOD.. TASTES even BETTER!
I blogged about her pizza many moons ago going on about how I was a pizza snob and how unconventional her recipe was compared to what I've read about. Well this month's Daring Baker challenge proved that yet again. Hosted by the lovely Rosa of Rosa's Yummy Yum's! You did an amazing job! Rosa took over after Sherry of What Did You Eat? passed this past July. Personally, I think Sher would have been extremely proud of Rosa and all of the Daring Bakers this month! Her idea for pizza was a fabulous one and the recipe she chose was excellent! :)
This recipe, written by Peter Reinhart and can be found in The Bread Baker's Apprentice, was very different from my Auntie's recipe. The dough is made with cold flour, ice cold water, a small amount of instant yeast, salt, sugar and olive oil. That's a big difference from water, flour and yeast that I'm used to.
But lemme tell yous.. the texture of this dough is rather uhmm.. moist. It is very very sticky - the wettest pizza dough I've ever dealt with for sure. I had that stuff stuck to everything but the fakkin' dogs for crissakes. Thank God they were sleeping in the living room when I made the dough! :) NONETHELESS it was fabulous. Holy cow, talk about silky smooth and pliable after it had fermented over night in the fridge! And once it was baked.. it was so tender. Yes the texture of this dough is what I fell in love with.
The taste? Not so much.. I mean, don't get me wrong.. it was good.. but I missed that tangy flavor from what I assume is the yeast in my Auntie's pizza dough. Someone needs to educate me on this.. because I know now that my Auntie uses WAY TOO MUCH yeast in her recipe (3 packets of yeast to 6 c. of flour), yes? Is there another way to get that same flavor without adding so much? Is the flavor tamed after it sits for so long? Because her recipe is only sitting long enough to double in size twice (approx. 2 hours).
I ask all of this because I think I could produce THE BEST PIZZA DOUGH EVER if I could just get the taste of my Auntie's pizza combined with the texture of Reinhart's pizza. :)
Anyhoo.. I'm getting ahead of myself. The taste of Reinhart's dough is flavorful, just not what I'm used to. I did discover that if your sauce is on the salty side it will not pair well with this dough.. for me my first pizzas were way too salty and I couldn't get through 2 slices. Hubbs, on the other hand, thought it was good. I made another pizza a week later with the extra dough frozen from the original batch. This time I simply par-baked the dough for about 5 minutes, then lightly brushed it with a little butter. Next, I sprinkled on this amazing combination of spices that I'd never used before called JoJo Potato from The Spice Depot. I'll be writing more about these spices in a future post.. they are delicious! On top of the spiced butter I spread shredded chicken, pineapple, more spice and shredded Monterey Jack cheese.
'kay well if I had one.. it would have *BOING*'d when I bit into that pizza.. oh my lawd, it was SO SO GOOD!
So without many mishaps this month (BUMMER) I'm pleased with my challenge and will continue to work on it so that I might find that perfect (for me) pizza dough that brings that twang I'm looking for to the tenderness of this dough.
Lots of amazing topping combinations out in Daring Baker Land today! I've already started my list of which I'll be trying in the future! CANNOT! WAIT! Oh and before I end this.. big hug and thanks to Natalie for helping with the gluten-free version of this recipe so our Daring Alternative Bakers wouldn't have a tough time joining in!