Friday, August 15, 2008

A new dough


Last Christmas, I received a copy of Jamie's Italy. Since hardcover cookbooks don't travel well, it remained on the shelf many miles away until recently.

I've been experimenting with doughs. In particular, ones that are slightly more lenient in the making than others. And I've found another winner. This makes heaps of dough (the recipe says 6 medium to 8 mini pizza bases). I found it just right for two good sized pizzas and the refrigerated the remaining half of the dough for later.



I don't normally use '00' flour for pizza but had just enough on hand (and decided to follow the recipe for once). The semolina also added a nice flavour. It's easily mixed in one large bowl with a wooden spoon and as it comes together can be worked with a dough scraper.



We're big on pizza. Especially baking it outside on a stone but that doesn't lend to the thick crust that defines the Calabrese sheet pizza (that coincides with the day that bread is made). I like the thin crust associated with the high heat of a wood-fired oven (or a stone) and some one else prefers the aforementioned loaf of bread with toppings.


Enter this crust. I stretched it out to have a nice edge crust that satisfied the thick crust aficionados amongst us and the center was thin enough for me with a nice crisp, but not crusty, bottom. The other important bit for me is flexibility in the making of the pizza. The remaining half of the dough was sealed in a plastic bag and placed in the fridge for 4 days.

I let the dough come to room temperature before stretching out on a semolina dusted peel. Happy to report that it rose beautifully at the edges and the middle stayed nice and even. Both fresh and refrigerated doughs had that balance of tender/ chewy interior and crisp exterior texture I was after.



Grazie mille Jamie e buon appetito!

2 comments:

Barbara said...

Very nice Mary. I use a easy and successful Donna Hay pizza dough but I might look out for the JO book in the library and try his.

Mary said...

Thank you Barbara. My previous doughs were based on ones from Fine Cooking and AGT, both with great results. However, this dough is an absolulte doddle to make: requires minimal rising time plus the flexibility to set aside some dough for later.. easy as. I see where some people on the JO website add oil or some milk to tenderise the dough. It works and a little olive oil adds flavour but it's all a matter of personal preference. I've also made it with unbleached all purpose (plus the semolina) with good results.
The book is worth a look. No shortage of warming dishes here.. pasta e cece, ribollita.. for you in the depths of a Brissie winter ;-)
Ciao,