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while this article may seem complex, it will probably take longer to read it than actually do it! Pizza is just a combination of dough, sauce, cheese and toppings. We're going to guide you through the basics and you can experiment from there.
You can buy a jar of pizza sauce at the grocery, which is perfectly ok, or you can make your own in no time. All it takes for a basic sauce is a can of crushed tomatoes, a little basil and some garlic and black pepper. All of the seasonings are optional and can be adjusted to taste. It can be cooked a few minutes, but it's great just like it is. You can mix up a batch in under 2 minutes.
The standard cheese of choice for pizza is mozzarella. It can be purchased in slices or in bags already shredded. You can add additional cheeses if you wish, but it's not necessary.
There are no limits to what can go on a pizza. You can purchase small packages of sliced pepperoni that contain plenty for several pizzas. A small can of mushrooms and some thinly sliced onion and bell pepper make a great addition. Ham, bacon bits, olives or what have you also are great. These can be prepared ahead to make your pizza construction a breeze.
This is the scary part for most people but it shouldn't be. Traditionally, dough had to be made hours in advance and allowed to rise several times before it could be rolled out. The dough kept 'snapping back' when trying to roll it out. Now with the advent of Fleischmann's pizza crust yeast, those days are in the past. This special pizza yeast allows you to roll it out as soon as it's mixed and kneaded for a couple of minutes. It rolls out smoothly and doesn't snap back. It rises in the oven and tastes wonderful. If you have a stand mixer or bread maker it only takes a few minutes from the time you start mixing until the crust is in the pan. If you don't have a mixer, it only takes a couple of minutes more (see below). Your pizza can be ready by the time the oven has finished heating up. This is a great, quick and easy solution to the neverending question: "what's for dinner?"
Tip: measure out several batches at a time, putting each batch in a zip top bag and drop an unopened yeast package in each bag. When you're ready for pizza, you can just open the yeast, add water and be mixing in less than a minute. How simple is that? !
No matter how you slice it, a crust can make or break a pizza. To ensure a savory pizza experience, follow these steps to create the perfect crust.
You will need:
1 3/4 - 2 1/4 cups of flour
1 envelope Fleischmann’s® Pizza Yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup of very warm water (120° to 130° F)
3 tablespoons oil
Combine 1 cup flour, undissolved yeast, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Add water and oil.
Mix together until well blended; about 1 minute.
Add ½ cup flour gradually until dough forms a ball. Add additional flour, if needed, to handle.
Spoon dough out of bowl onto floured surface. Dough will be slightly sticky.
Knead on floured surface.
Knead until dough is smooth and elastic; about 4 minutes.
Press dough out to fill greased pizza pan.
Roll dough to a 12-inch circle and transfer to greased pizza pan.
Top as desired with pizza sauce, cheese and toppings.
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