Pizza is the ultimate crowd-pleasing party food, no matter the occasion or the time of year. Serve it cut into squares, while you stand up and sip cocktails; share three around a large table with friends. You can even crack an egg on top and call it brunch (stay tuned for more on that tomorrow!)
A good, homemade dough is the perfect blank slate for your favorite toppings. If it seems like a hassle, it doesn’t have to be — the dough is surprisingly simple and ideal for making ahead. Just let it rise slowly in the refrigerator overnight, and you’ll be ready to roll out, top off and bake in no time.
2 packages (5 tsp.) active dry yeast
2 1/2 cups (18 fl. oz./560 ml.) warm water (105-155 degrees F/40-46 degrees C)
2 tsp. malt syrup or granulated sugar
1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml.) olive oil
5 cups (25 oz./780 g.) bread flour, plus extra as needed
1 Tbs. sea salt
All-purpose flour for rolling and shaping
|Add the other ingredients
When you have determined that the yeast is active, add the malt syrup or sugar, oil, flour and salt. The salt will kill the yeast if it comes in direct contact with it, so make sure to add the salt last.
|Mix the dough
Using a wooden spoon or your hands, stir the dough until it forms a rough mass. Using a plastic pastry scraper, scrape the dough onto a lightly floured work surface.
|Knead the dough
Knead the dough until soft, smooth and elastic, 8 to 10 minutes, adding flour to the work surface as needed to prevent the dough from sticking to it.
Our pizzas featured at the top of this page — Salumi and Cheese, Potato and Rosemary, and Prosciutto and Fig — won’t disappoint, but you can also experiment with more of your favorite ingredients. Our recommendations:
- Sauces: tomato sauce, pesto, bechamel
- Cheeses: mozzarella, creamy Gorgonzola, fresh ricotta, Parmesan, fontina, fresh goat cheese
- Protein: sausage, pancetta, bresaola, anchovies, sardines, toasted chopped walnuts
- Vegetables & Fruits: tomatoes of all shapes and sizes; braised fennel; sauteed onions; sliced figs; halved grapes; potato slices; zucchini slices; eggplant slices; roasted garlic
- Fresh Finishes: arugula, spinach, chopped fresh herbs, prosciutto
Need more inspiration? Check out our favorite pizza recipes!