Pizza night isn't dead, and how not to be responsible for a frozen delivery driver
Updated: Feb 9, 2021
It's the middle of a pandemic. Baking has become a way of life for a LOT of people (you know I am pointing at you, the one in your sweatpants, surfing the internet and deciding which carb to eat next). While I haven't yet succumbed to the allure of the sourdough starter yet, and I do mean YET, because let's face it, inevitably I will feel the same lure as so many who have gone before me at some point and will have my very own yeasty version of Audrey growing on my kitchen counter begging to be fed, I do love the feel of a lovely dough as it forms, and then enjoying it fresh out of the oven.
But I digress. And those sentences were running on. We decided the other night we needed pizza. Like REALLY needed pizza. And there was a raging snowstorm outside. I wasn't leaving to do a pickup, and a team of sled dogs training for the Iditarod would have had issues making it to my house. There was no way the frostbitten demise of some poor delivery driver stuck in a snowbank was going to be on my conscience, just so I could get my pepperoni and loaded veggie fix. So, baking it was. This gluten free crust worked really well to placate my need for a quick and easy takout pizza, even if it took some patience. I promise it's worth it. And if you happen to save the life of a pizza delivery driver on a snowy evening, you can thank me.
1 envelope of active dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 cup of lukewarm water
5 tablespoons of olive oil (I used extra virgin, but you could vary to change flavors)
3 cups of gluten free flour (I used King Arthur Gluten Free when making my pizza)
pinch of salt
additional 1-2 cups of water
In a small bowl, dissolve sugar and yeast into lukewarm water. Allow to sit for about 15 minutes while yeast blooms (it will actually grow and you will see bubbles all over the surface. How sciency)
In a stand mixed, preferably with a dough hook attachment, add flour, olive oil, and salt. Pour in yeast mixture. Begin mixing on low-medium low setting. Slowly add in water until a stiff dough forms. You may not need it all, and this really is based on your climate. The dough should pull away from the sides of the mixer.
Remove the dough from the mixer and place into a large greased bowl. Cover and place in a warm place with no drafts to rise for about two hours. Your dough should double in size.
Once dough is ready, remove, and divide into portions. Flour your surface. Flour your hands with the gluten free flour and work the dough into small circle (or square, or rectangle, or shape of a unicorn if you prefer). Use a floured rolling pin if you need help getting it to a even thickness. Depending on how you feel about crust, you can vary how thick it is, but remember, it will rise in size as it bakes, do you do want to make it fairly thinnish.
Preheat over to 425 degrees.
Place prepared dough on a baking sheet or pizza stone sprinkled with cornmeal. This helps the sticking while baking.
Place your desired toppings on your pizza. You can let your imagination run wild here. My favorite is to spread a thin layer of ricotta cheese, drizzle olive oil, garlic and italian seasoning, then top with chopped fresh tomatoes, green peppers, thin sliced red onions, artichoke hearts, pepperoni, black olives, banana peppers, and shredded mozzerella.
Place your pizza in the preheated oven and bake until cheese is melted and crust starts to take on a golden brown color (I will check the bottom by lifting it slightly from my pizza stone.
Remove from oven, allow to cool for a few minutes to set the cheese, slice, and enjoy!