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Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Five Cheese Pizza

I chose to go with pizza theme for this week's blogging marathon and the first one in the series is going to be a cheese flavored one. The kind my daughter / any kid in general goes gaga over. Over the years, I have tried a few dough bases for the pizzas and this particular one that I copied from a cookbook is fat-free and no-nonsense kind and I absolutely love it.
The following ingredients are for a pound dough and yield a 14 inch pizza. I usually divide the dough to make 2 small ones - one especially loaded with cheese for my daughter. I could not take pictures when I made the pizzas with the following cheese measurements. I took pictures the day I made when my daughter was hovering around asking me for a cheese pizza. She preferred less quantity of cheese on that particular day and so you don't see a lot of cheese in the images. :)
(I prepare the dough by hands since it is a small quantity and bake on a baking sheet and so that is what mentioned below.)

1.5 tsp active dry yeast
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup luke warm water (105 - 115 deg F)
1 cup bread flour
1 cup all purpose flour
6 - 8 Tbsp pizza sauce
12 - 14 oz / about 2 cups shredded cheese (I used Italian five cheese blend - Mozzarella, Asiago, Parmesan, Provolone and Romano.)

1. Preparation of pizza dough:
* Combine water, yeast, salt and sugar in a mixing bowl. Stir just until everything is dissolved. Cover and set aside the mixture for about 5 minutes at room temperature. The mixture would usually bubble and foam by the time.
* Stir in both flours with a wooden spoon. You can either work the dough in the mixing bowl or transfer the mixture to a floured work space. Work dough back and forth with the heels of your hands. Knead until smooth and elastic for about 8 minutes. If the dough is dry while kneading, add extra water in 1 Tbsp increments. I find that this recipe needs an extra tbsp of water.
* Grease a bowl and place the dough in the prepared bowl. Turn the dough so that all sides are coated with oil. Cover and place in a warm spot to rise until doubled in size, about 2 hours.

2. Assembling and Baking:
* Punch down the dough and knead briefly.
* Preheat the oven to 425 deg F.
* Grease a large baking sheet or a pizza tray.
* Place the dough on the baking sheet and dimple the dough with fingertips until its a flattened circle. Then pull and press it until it forms about14 inch circle or 12 by 7 inch wide rectangle, of about 1/8 inch thickness. Instead of a big pizza, I made two 6-7 inch pizzas.
* Spread the sauce evenly over the crust, leaving a 1/2 inch border at it's edge.
* Sprinkle the cheeses evenly over the sauce.
* Bake until the cheese has melted and just started to brown, about 15 - 17 minutes.
* Remove and transfer the pizza onto a wire rack to slightly cool before slicing it.

1. Yeast usually doesn't foam either when the yeast is expired or the water is not at right temperature. However sometimes I have noticed that the mixture wouldn't bubble and foam even though yeast is fresh and water is at right temperature. In that case, allow the dough to rest for extra time to rise.
2. The above ingredients make 1 pound dough. And so a pound of store bought fresh or thawed frozen dough can be used instead.
3. If using your own combination of cheeses, use firm / semi hard cheeses and avoid soft cheeses like ricotta.

Check the page for other marathoners who are doing BM #35.



Pallavi Purani said...

Aah thats a gift from God I say. Slurrppppp Already

Manjula Bharath said...

omg got thats an cheese pizza looks so yummilicious :) tempting me !!

Briju Parthasarathy said...

Yummy pizza, looks mouth watering

Srivalli said...

I can dig into this anytime Suma..love it!..looking forward to your series..:)

Priya Srinivasan said...

That is really really tempting suma!!! The first pic is soo inviting I feel like grabbing it from the pic!!

Harini-Jaya R said...

Sounds like an easy one ..My kids are in a no-cheese pizza phase right now..so I try to add some veggies :)

Vanamala Hebbar said...

Very nice

Chef Mireille said...

perfect slice of pizza

Sapana Behl said...

Very tempting slice of pizza ! Lovely....

nandoos Kitchen said...

very yummy pizza

Padmajha PJ said...

I have always wanted to make pizza fromt eh scratch but never got aound doing it. I am really looking forward to your other posts with this theme.
And this pizza is my lil ones fav...

Archana Potdar said...

Yummmmmmm! Just right for me. I love the cheesey pizzas.:)

Pavani N said...

My son would LOVE this pizza. It is just PERFECT.

Sandhya Ramakrishnan said...

The pizza could not have come out more perfectly than this! Looks so good :)