You may have read in other posts in this blog that I joined ChefSteps, a food and technology company based in Seattle. Through their app, they provide recipes, techniques and tutorials on a wide range of food to help people “cook smarter.”
I have had outstanding success with a number of their recipes and techniques but The Independent Pizzeria‘s crust may be “pizza de resistance” thus far. ChefSteps posted a tutorial with Joe Heffernan showing how to make his amazing crust. While visiting Neil and Maureen in Seattle earlier this month we went to Independent Pizzeria for dinner, sampled his pizza (and fresh bread, warm honey and chevre cheese appetizer) and met Joe. For the “right” way to make this pizza dough refer to the tutorial. This post documents what I did, and proves it is possible to make this dough by a home, amateur baker. It is undoubtedly the best pizza dough I ever made.
I made the full recipe, used 1/3 and froze the other two balls, wrapped in heavy Darnel polycarbonate wrap after removing from the fridge the next day. There was enough sauce for two of the full sized pies. We like lots of sauce.
Independent Pizza Dough
- 415 g Bread flour
- 9 g Salt
- 270 g Water
- 1.5 g Cake yeast , or 1 g dry yeast
- Olive oil , for greasing , as needed
- In a medium-sized bowl, mix bread flour and salt thoroughly.
- Combine water and yeast
- Using a thermometer, adjust sink tap until it reaches a temperature of 65 °F / 18 °C. Add water to a new bowl.
- Add cake yeast and gently stir to combine.
- Make a well in the center of the flour.
- Pour in the water and yeast.
- Using a wooden spoon, mix ingredients together until you have a shaggy, rugged mass of dough.
- In a stand mixer equipped with the dough hook, mix dough on medium speed for about seven and a half minutes, or until the dough has formed a uniform mass and pulls cleanly away from the sides of the bowl.
- Dust your work surface with flour.
- Turn dough onto the work surface and shape into a ball.
- Ferment dough for 5–8 hours in a covered container.
- NOTE: Make sure that the temperature of the room is conducive to fermentation. It should be around 65 °F / 18 °C in there.
- Using a scale, divide the dough into 230 g portions. Shape each portion into a ball.
- Pour a dollop of olive oil into the palm of your hand, and lightly roll each ball on the countertop to cover with oil. This helps the dough retain moisture as it rests in the next step.
- Transfer dough to the fridge and chill, uncovered, for 10–30 minutes.
- Cover with an airtight lid and let rest overnight in the fridge. This is the point you can freeze some of the portions for later use. Wrap each portion in heavy plastic wrap and freeze. When ready to use, remove from the freezer and let come to room temperature, then continue as below.
- Proof in warm room until dough is relaxed and ready to stretch, about 20 minutes.
- Stretch and shape
- Each pie should be about 36–40 cm (14–15 in) across.
Sweet and Salty Pizza Sauce
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 medium tomatoes, diced
- 1 can tomato paste
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper, freshly ground
- 2 tablespoons (4 large leaves) fresh basil, coarsely chopped
- Heat oil in medium saucepan over a medium heat until hot.
- Add garlic; cook 30 seconds or until fragrant.
- Stir in tomatoes, tomato paste, salt and pepper and cook for 8-10 minutes or until slightly thickened, stirring and mashing tomatoes with potato masher until crushed.
- Stir in basil.
- Place in small bowl; cool to room temperature This sauce may be made up to 3 days ahead and refrigerated or up to 2 months ahead and frozen.