Saturday, January 3, 2009

Pizza Crust

One of my favorite books from last year is Saturday Beans & Sunday Suppers by Edie Clark, a wonderful travel through her life via food. Her chapter titles are the decades from The Sixties through The Nineties & Beyond. This is one of those books I'll store with my cookbooks. Some others of the same ilk are two Evelyn Birkby books - Up a Country Lane Cookbook and Neighboring on the Air; and At Grandmother's Table edited by Ellen Perry Berkeley.

The first recipe I tried from Edie Clark's book is pizza crust. I've been making the same crust for many, many years now. It's an adaptation of a friend's recipe, and it has always served me well. Yet when I read about this one, I thought I'd give it a try. The recipe which follows is a little different from hers, but still close enough to call it:

Edie Clark's Pizza Crust

Dissolve 2 1/2 teaspoons baking yeast in a cup of warm water, with a little sugar added (maybe a teaspoon).

In the electric mixer, at low speed, mix together:
1 cup whole wheat flour - Addendum: in 2012 I started using all white. And 2 1/2 cups rather than 2. It is perfect.
1 cup white (unbleached) flour
1/4 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon olive oil

When the yeast is bubbly, add it to dry mix. Stir well.
Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place for about an hour.
Spread on greased pizza pan or cookie sheet.
Top with sauce and any veggies and/or cheese that you wish. (Tom sprinkles a little black pepper on his side).
Bake at 375º F. until crust is slightly browned and cheese is done to your satisfaction - maybe 30 minutes.

We both like this thin crust so much that it is the only recipe I use now.

Everyone has their own special way of making tomato sauce. Some like it chunky, some smooth, some with vegetables added. I noted in the other pizza recipe (under main meals on the sidebar) how I make my own sauce. But here it is again. I use either Muir Glen or Bionaturæ canned crushed tomatoes and Bionaturæ tomato paste.

2 28-ounce cans tomatoes put through the food mill
2 7-ounce jars tomato paste
handful or more of basil
about a T. salt
onions and garlic which has been sautéd in 1/4 cup olive oil

For tonight's pizza, I sautéd some shallots and zucchini to put on the top. And, as I may have mentioned (like a hundred times!) I don't like cheese, so we divide ours into his and her halves. :<)

12 comments:

  1. That pizza looks really tasty, Nan. I never make pizza myself, but I'm going to try to cook more this year. Might just have to try a few of your recipes.

    P.S. I've decided (in my own wishy-washy way) to go ahead an start posting again on my blog. Come on by!! HA!

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  2. Nan, I just popped over to wish you a very happy 2009 and to say that I like the new look to your blog. Now I'm feeling hungry, having seen that delicious pizza. I can smell it here in the west of England!

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  3. Kay, honestly, it couldn't be easier. Just buy some sauce you love and cheese, and make this crust, and voila! great, great pizza. We don't even want to buy any from restaurants anymore. Thank you, thank you, thank you for starting up your blog again. I was just thinking the other day how I've missed that "ha!"
    Monix, thanks so much and the same to you! That pizza is out of this world. Please do try it if you are so inclined. :<)

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  4. You make it sound so easy!! One of these days I'm going to try this!!

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  5. Staci, honestly it is easy! I promise. Please let me know if you try it and how it turned out. Just throw on some sauce-in-a-jar if you want. You can't go wrong!

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  6. We make pizza a lot here. We use the bread machine to make the dough, super easy, takes 1.5 hours. (Yeast scares me to cook with)
    We actually made pizza for New Year's Eve supper, and I went all radical and had Hawaiian- Candian back bacon and pineapple. Mostly, the kids like pepperoni or plain.
    We use canned sauce, and lots of cheese - mozza and cheddar and parm.

    mmm, now I want pizza again!

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  7. Gee, it looks like "his" half is smaller than "her" half. :)

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  8. Raidergirl, yeast isn't scary, I promise. It's the cookbooks that scare people when they say the water has to be such and such exact temp and the yeast has to be a certain way. I run warm water right from the tap - not hot just regular warm and put it in a glass meas. cup. I put in the yeast and add a little sugar to make it grow better and in a few minutes it is bubbly and ready. I promise. Let me know if you try sometime.
    And Les, if you look really, really closely at the picture, you'll see a line drawn down the middle. It is equal, but I don't put Tom's cheese right up to that middle line because it would spread onto my side of the pizza. :<) So, he ends up with a bit that doesn't have cheese on it, that's all.

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  9. :) You really don't like cheese at all, do you? And you know I was just teasing you, right?

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  10. Les, no I do not! and yes I do. :<)

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  11. I sure wish I was your neighbor so that I could stop by for a taste. I love looking at all your recipes.

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  12. Thanks, Kay, so much. I would love that.

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