For the pizza dough:
- 1 1/2 cups warm water (110°F to 115°F)
- 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
For the pizza toppings:
- Tomato sauce or pizza sauce
- Shredded mozzarella cheese
- Your favorite toppings (e.g., pepperoni, sliced bell peppers, sliced onions, sliced olives, sliced mushrooms, etc.)
- Olive oil (for brushing the crust)
- Italian seasoning or dried oregano (optional)
- Prepare the pizza dough: a. In a small bowl, combine the warm water, active dry yeast, and sugar. Let it sit for about 5-10 minutes until it becomes foamy. b. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt. Make a well in the center. c. Pour the yeast mixture and olive oil into the well in the flour. d. Mix everything until a dough forms. e. Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 5 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic. f. Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover it with a clean kitchen towel, and let it rise for about 1-2 hours, or until it has doubled in size.
- Preheat your oven: Preheat your oven to the highest temperature it can go (usually around 500°F to 550°F or 260°C to 290°C).
- Prepare the pizza: a. Punch down the risen dough and divide it into the number of pizzas you want to make. For a standard pizza, you can divide it into 2-4 portions. b. Roll out each portion of dough into your desired pizza shape on a floured surface. c. Transfer the rolled-out dough to a pizza stone, pizza pan, or baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Add the toppings: a. Spread a thin layer of tomato or pizza sauce over the dough, leaving a small border around the edges for the crust. b. Sprinkle a generous amount of shredded mozzarella cheese over the sauce. c. Add your choice of toppings and season with Italian seasoning or dried oregano if desired.
- Bake the pizza: Place the pizza in the preheated oven and bake for about 10-15 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown, and the cheese is bubbly and lightly browned.
- Serve and enjoy: Carefully remove the pizza from the oven, let it cool for a minute or two, slice it, and enjoy your homemade pizza!
Feel free to get creative with your pizza toppings and experiment with different ingredients to suit your preferences. Homemade pizza is a fun and versatile dish that you can customize to your heart’s content.