Thursday, September 30, 2010

pizza dough and other pizza tidbits

Trekking down a path like this to cook? How fun is that?! Funtastic!

I realize this looks like an out-of-control fire, but inside this oven, a test is underway to see if red bell peppers can be roasted while the oven gets up to temperature...The peppers get charred on all sides...then thrown in a paper bag to steam ... then the charred skin is peeled off. wow!! It worked!

I was reading about a pizza with grilled fresh corn, roasted red bell pepper, and smoked mozzarella. It sounded really good...and really unique! After getting a bit cocky with our roasted peppers, our humility was restored with our roasted corn...charred would be a better description. (: Below is a picture of the pizza with a few non-burned kernels. It was a fun new combination....I would top it with lots of parmesan, or a toss of sea salt...(more corn would have been good too!)

So, on to the dough recipe...

Being continually frustrated with dough that was too tough to stretch...then too fragile to stretch...

Being confused by all purpose flour... bread flour... King Arthur's 00 flour...

We took action, and googled Italian Caputo 00 flour. One would think that Italian flour would be readily available here....especially since Italy imports most of its wheat from North Dakota! (I am very proud of that, considering I was... well, still am... sort of... a ND wheat farmer) If you can make sense of that, you are good!
The site we found for the flour is This flour makes amazing dough.. it stretches easily without tearing, and has wonderful flavor and texture!

So, on to the dough recipe....again

4 cups Italian Caputo 00 flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp yeast dissolved in 1/4 cup warm water
1 1/4 cup warm water

Mix together and knead for 7-8 minutes. Let rise about 2 hours until doubled in size.
Punch down.
At this point, we divide the dough into 5 pieces and put them in individual bowls....and if we are not going to use them for a few hours, we cover them with plastic wrap and put them in the refrigerator until an hour before pizza time!

Apparently you can freeze the dough in individual bags before the initial rising, then take the dough out of the freezer the morning of the pizza party to let it rise. We have not been able to try this yet .... it gets eaten as soon as it is made! If someone has tried this and knows the process, let us know!

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