• Sandy


Updated: Feb 17, 2018

1 ½ cups hot water + 1 cup room temp water, if additional water is needed

1 ¼ tsp active yeast

1 tsp sugar

3 ½ cups all purpose flour + more for board and rolling pin

1 tsp salt

¼ cup olive oil

1 – 28 oz can San Marzano, or your favorite tomato sauce

1 Tbs finely chopped fresh oregano - optional

Salt and pepper to taste

Fresh mozzarella slices

Grated parmesan cheese

Basil leaves

In a small glass bowl mix together hot water, yeast, and sugar. Allow to sit for 15-20 minutes until it starts to bubble.

In a large glass mixing bowl mix together flour and salt. Form a well in the center. Pour the yeast mixture and olive oil into the well. Mix well with a wooden spoon. If the mixture is too dry add a few tablespoons of the reserved water, if too wet sprinkle small amounts of reserved flour. Continue working with the dough, mixing with your hands until the dough begins to form a ball and easily pulls away from the walls of the bowl.

Remove the dough and place on a lightly floured surface. Kneed by pushing out with your palms and then pulling back for about 5 minutes, until the dough is not sticky and is a smooth consistency. Form the dough into a ball. Coat the mixing bowl with 2 Tbs of olive oil. Place the dough ball back in the bowl and rotate to cover with the oil. Cover the bowl with a damp towel and rest for 1 hour.

Punch down the dough, it should have a springy/spongy feel. Remove the dough from the bowl and form into another ball on a floured surface. Cut ball into 6 equal pieces and form each into a ball. Sprinkle flour on a metal sheet pan, place balls in the pan and allow to rest for 25-30 minutes.

Prepare your toppings while the dough is resting.

In a small saucepan over medium high heat combine the tomato sauce, oregano, salt and pepper. Reduce heat to simmer and cook about 5 minutes.

Working with one ball at a time on a floured board, move dough out with fingers, using a pulling motion. Then using a rolling pin or bat roll out into a thin layer.

Brush about 2 Tbs of olive oil onto a cast iron skillet on medium high heat. Place 1 rolled out dough ball into the skillet. Cook until you get a nice brown char on the bottom, about 2-3 minutes. Flip pizza over.

Spread a ladle of sauce in a circular motion covering the cooked side of the pizza but leaving about ½ inch around the edges. Top with mozzarella, sprinkle with parmesan, and place a few basil leaves around. Drizzle with a little olive oil. Lower the head to medium and cook for 2-3 minutes until the cheese is melted and the crust is dark golden brown on the bottom.

Makes 6 personal sized pizzas

Recipe Tips

You can purchase raw pizza dough from most grocery stores these days. It’s a great way to cut out some steps and save some time.

San Marzano tomatoes have a wonderful, tangy flavor and require little seasoning but if you have other tomato sauce handy, use it. This is also a great way to use up leftover pasta sauces. Pesto, marinara, and Alfredo sauces are great substitutions.

Use whatever cheese you like or need to use up. You can really make this recipe your own.

For a fun family dinner or even a great party idea, add a few other topping options and let everyone make their own pizza. Try sautéed onions, peppers, sliced black olives, blanched broccoli, artichoke hearts, pepperoni, cooked shrimp, browned Italian sausage, whatever your family/friends like.