Recipe: Pepperoni & Sun Dried Tomato Pizza

I’ve been making my own pizza dough for years. It’s actually pretty easy once you learn to do it. A few weeks ago I made pizzas for myself and my wife. Since she’s a vegetarian and I’m not, we always end up with separate pizzas. Hers was green olives and fresh tomatoes. Mine was thick cut pepperoni and sun dried tomatoes. I thought it turned out really well, so here’s the recipe.

Ingredients:
1 (.25) ounce package active dry yeast (highly active)
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 cup warm water
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 1/2 cups bread floor (Gold Medal Better for Bread)
Shredded cheese (just mozzarella or combine with provolone)
Pizza sauce (store bought or make your own, depending on your pickiness)
Pepperoni
Sun Dried Tomatoes

Directions:
Dissolve yeast and sugar with warm water until creamy (about 10 minutes).
Stir in salt, oil and flour, beat until smooth.
Allow to rise for 1 hour, kneed dough again, let rise again for 5-10 minutes).
(For a more doughy, chewy crust, refrigerate the dough for 1-2 days)

Preheat oven on “Broil” at 450. Place an oven rack on the 2nd highest level. Too high and the bubbling grease/cheese can hit the heating element and smoke/catch on fire.

If using a baking stone, sprinkle with cornmeal and warm up the baking stone before baking the pizza. I use a grated metal pizza pan as well.

I don’t load up the dough and cook it all at once, as I find it get a soggy pizza, so this is what I do:

1. Flatten the dough into the shape I want, put on the pan and bake for 2-3 minutes.
2. Take out the dough, cover with sauce and return to bake another 2-3 minutes.
3. Take out the dough, cover with pepperoni first, then cheese, then sun dried tomatoes. If you feel like it, garnish the edge of the dough with parmesan cheese mixed with melted butter. Makes the crust extra good.
4. Bake another 5-7 minutes, keeping an eye on the cheese – it should bubble, but not brown. The crust should have a golden hue to it.

After I pull the pizza out of the oven, I add a dusting of crushed red peppers and let it sit for a minute.

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