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Basic Pizza Dough

Makes enough dough for 2 smallish (10- to 12-inch) pizzas Servings
Makes enough dough for 2 smallish (10- to 12-inch) pizzas Servings


  • 1/2 active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Preparation

    Baking Directions:

    In a large bowl, stir together the yeast, water, and 2 tablespoons oil.

    Then add the flour, sprinkle the salt over, and stir into the wet ingredients with a spoon.

    When the dough gets too stiff to stir with the spoon, knead in the unincorporated flour by hand, picking up the dough with one hand and pressing it against the sides and bottom of the bowl to pick up any bits, and then folding it over on itself so that it all sticks together.

    Do this until you have a cohesive (if still messy) ball of dough.

    Turn out the dough onto a clean work surface and knead for 10 minutes.

    (If kneading is not on your top-ten list of things you love to do, 3 to 5 minutes will suffice, or get a mixer with a dough hook.)

    At the beginning, the dough will be sticky; but don’t add flour and don’t flour the work surface.

    (If your hands have wet dough sticking to them, wash them so that the dough doesn’t stick to your hands.)

    Just keep kneading.

    The soft dough will eventually get very smooth and supple.

    Rinse the bowl, dry it, and grease it with the remaining 1 teaspoon of oil.

    Put the dough into the bowl; cover with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until it has increased about 1-1/2 times in volume, about 1 hour.

    (If you’re not ready when the dough is, just punch it down again and let it sit until you’re ready for it.

    It’s not going anywhere.)


    One-half package of yeast will give you a very thin, crisp crust.

    If you like a puffier, breadier crust, use the whole package; the rest of the ingredient quantities in the recipe stay the same.

    Whichever way you go, you can’t lose.

    If you live in an area that gets very humid, you might find one day that the 3 cups of flour just doesn’t do it — the dough is wet and sticky.

    In which case, go ahead and add a little more flour.

    The humidity is simply making the dough wetter.

    The opposite goes for those of you in Death Valley.

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