Before I begin, let’s be honest, what does beer not taste good?
Perfection, that’s what beer is. I used to be a beer hater (outside of being used in food) but I’ve really come to love Red Stripe Bold. Only that one though, I’m still adjusting to other beers.
Now to the pizza. This pizza was delicious. Yes, the toppings were great, but the crust was what made it for me. I love that this dough can be used to make a thinner crust if you so desire, or a soft but firm slightly crunchy at the bottom herbed crust.
Truth is, I was looking exactly for a crust like this. Something that would challenge but I knew would probably be very satisfying. After stalking foodgawker I came across Blue Bonnets and Brownies‘ post. While I didn’t copy the rest of their dough recipe, I did include the beer in mine.
Okay at this point I’m forcing more words but simply put TRY THIS PIZZA. We gobbled it down. Phew, honesty. I think there is one more piece left only because I am willing myself and chanting a mantra. But the more I think about it the more I see myself going for it. Now. Okay, I will finish writing this first. Then, hello pizza.
UPDATED – I was asked to post the recipe so here it is!
What’s your favourite type of pizza crust? Thick? Soft? Crunchy? Thin?
- 3 cups flour (can replace up to half of this with whole wheat flour)
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1½ teaspoons active dry yeast (Bob's Red Mill works wonders)
- 1 cup lukewarm water (may need up to 1 or 2 tablespoons more)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 6 oz beer (I used Red Stripe)
- Parsley, Oregano, 1 tsp Parmesan Cheese and Basil in a Herb Mix
- 6 oz. of tomato paste
- 6 oz. of water
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 teaspoons of oregano
- 1 teaspoon fresh basil, chopped
- 1 tbsp of fresh parsley, chopped
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon of pepper
- 1 teaspoon of Parmesan cheese
- 2 cups of shredded cheese (I used a four cheese blend of Sargento cheese)
- Packaged Chicken Sausage (for chicken slices) or Pepperoni
- Parsley, Basil and Oregano
- Parmesan Cheese
- Stir dry ingredients, including yeast, in a large bowl. Add water and olive oil, stirring mixture into as close to a ball as you can. Add the beer. Dump all clumps and floury bits onto a lightly floured surface and knead everything into a homogeneous ball.
- If you are finding this step difficult, one of the best tricks I picked up from my bread-making class is to simply pause. Leave the dough in a lightly-floured spot, put the empty bowl upside-down on top of it and come back in 2 to 5 minutes, at which point you will find the dough a lot more lovable.
- Knead it for just a minute or two. Lightly oil the bowl (a spritz of cooking spray perfectly does the trick) where you had mixed it — one-bowl recipe! — dump the dough in, turn it over so all sides are coated, cover it in plastic wrap and leave it undisturbed for two hours, until it has doubled in size. You can place it inside your cold oven so it's out of wind's way.
- Meanwhile, make the pizza sauce while the dough is rising.
- Heat a medium pot over medium-high heat. Add the tomato paste, water and olive oil to heat. Using a spatula or spoon, stir ingredients together frequently until incorporated and begins to boil a little for about 1 minute.
- Add salt and pepper to taste and incorporate. Then add the rest of the ingredients, leaving a little parsley behind. Stir ingredients and lower heat to low. Cover the pot and leave to simmer for about 5 minutes to 8 minutes, checking to make sure the basil and parsley don’t burn. If it’s too thick for you, you can add more water by the tablespoon.
- Garnish with remaining parsley.
- Dump it back on the floured counter, and gently press the air out of the dough with the palm of your hands. Fold the piece into an approximate ball shape, and let it sit under that plastic wrap for 20 more minutes. Add the herbs at this point.
- Preheat the oven to 500F. Or, 450F if that's the highest your oven goes.
- Roll out your pizza on a floured surface so it doesn't stick and lift slowly, and unto a cookie sheet.
- Drizzle some oil lightly over the side of the pizza facing up.
- Place the pizza dough in the oven for 5 minutes to cook.
- Then remove, add pizza sauce, and toppings. Start with a layer of cheese, then chicken/pepperoni slices, then more cheese, and more slices on top (so you have ingredients in layers on the pizza).
- Sprinkle Parmesan Sauce and parlsey, basil and oregano (you can always just use an Italian seasoning blend) on top of cheese and pizza.
- Place back in for 8 minutes at 500F and 11 minutes for 450F. You have to watch the pizza and the level of crispiness you want; basically until the cheese has began to bubble.
- Remove, cut and enjoy.