Homemade Pizza is a regular feature on the FishFam menu. I try to make it at least once a week, usually on Fridays. This makes a great start to our weekend. Coupled with rootbeer, a movie, and snacks, it creates a fun family night for my husband and me and our six children.
The first time I made pizza, it was a terrible bomb and I vowed never to make it again. That was fifteen years ago. About three years later when our first child was born and we moved to one income, I reconsidered that vow. I liked pizza, but I knew it wasn’t in the budget to indulge on a regular basis.
Instead, I set out to teach myself how to make it at home. After some trial and error, I’ve come up with something that we like just as well if not better than pizza parlour pies. I still goof up sometimes, but overall everyone enjoys pizza night.
I rely on my bread machine to make fantastic dough. The texture can vary a little, depending on the humidity, but overall it’s pretty consistent.
Recipe: Pizza Dough
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- 4 1/2 cups flour
- 1 Tablespoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon yeast
- Combine ingredients in the bread machine pan according to the order recommended by your machine’s manufacturer. Set on dough and start the machine, checking after ten minutes to make sure all the ingredients have been incorporated and not stuck to the side of the pan.
- When dough is ready, divide into portions. This makes six individual pizzas or three to four large. Shape each portion into a flat round. Place on a cookie sheet or pizza pan that has been greased and sprinkled with corn meal. Spread pizza crust with sauce.
I usually use whatever spaghetti sauce I have on hand. Usually something I’ve made myself, like this tomato sauce with meats. I prepare it in huge quantities and store it in 2-cup portions in the freezer. The morning of pizza night, I pull out a container to thaw in the refrigerator.
I use about 2/3 cup sauce for large pizzas, 1/3 cup for smaller, individual size pies.
Start with a sprinkling of cheese. We like a combination of shredded jack and mozzarella cheeses.
Next layer on whatever toppings you like:
- sliced mushrooms
- diced onion
- diced or sliced tomato
- sliced, black olives
- chopped zucchini
- sliced bell pepper
Top with more cheese.
A preheated oven is key to a great crust. Up to an hour before baking, set your oven to 475 °. Bake pizzas for 8-15 minutes, depending on their size. Use the shorter baking time for smaller pizzas, the longer time for larger ones. Pay close attention to how your oven operates and how brown your pizzas are getting. I cook only one large pizza at a time.
What’s your favorite pizza topping?