Sep 192008

On Friday evenings, I like to make homemade pizza for supper. I can make a pepperoni pizza (my family’s favorite) in about 20 minutes of hands-on time, for approximately $3, using ingredients purchased as cheaply as possible.

I’ve tried lots of different pizza crust variations, including the little crust mix packets at the store (blech!) and some very good, but time-consuming yeast dough recipes. My favorite easy recipe is the food processor pizza dough recipe from Amy Dacyczyn’s Tightwad Gazette. This dough comes together so quickly, has a nice texture, and tastes really good!

To make it you will need:

1/2 to 3/4 cup warm water
2 1/4 tsp dry yeast
1 tsp sugar
2 c unbleached, all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp oil
1/2 tsp salt

First, combine 1/4 cup of warm water with yeast and sugar. Stir to dissolve yeast. Let stand 5 minutes until bubbly:

In food processor, blend flour, oil and salt for 5 seconds. Add yeast mixture and process 10 more seconds until blended. With processor running, slowly drizzle in warm water, until the dough forms a ball. Don’t overprocess!

If you don’t have a food processor, you can combine the flour, oil and salt in a mixing bowl with a fork. Then make a well in the center, pour the yeast mixture, and another 1/4 cup warm water into it, and stir until it forms a ball. If it seems too dry, gradually add small amounts of warm water until it’s the right consistency. Turn the dough ball out onto a lightly floured surface (I prefer to use a Silpat) and knead by hand for 4-5 minutes, until it’s smooth and elastic.

Place dough ball in the center of an oiled pizza pan. Cover with a bowl, and let rise for 10 minutes:

With lightly oiled fingers, press dough out:

Top with your favorite toppings:

We like to use spaghetti sauce instead of pizza sauce. It’s cheaper per ounce, and we like the slightly sweeter flavor. I found these 28-ounce cans at the scratch and dent for only 35 cents:

I only need about 1/4 of a can to make one pizza. You can also make a “stuffed crust” pizza by putting sticks of mozzarella around the perimeter of the pan, and folding the crust over them. Make sure to pat the dough up the edges of the pan so you have enough to fold over.

Bake in a preheated, 425-degree oven for 15-20 minutes. Here’s the finished pizza:

My family loves it! We never have leftovers.

Enjoy a homemade pizza with your family tonight, and save a little dough! Sorry, I just couldn’t resist.