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Pizza Margherita

Makes two 12-inch pizzas
Dough
1 1/4teaspoons instant yeast
1 cup (8 ounces)water, room temperature
1 3/4 cups (8 3/4 ounces)unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting work surface and peel
1 cup (4 ounces)cake flour
1 1/2 teaspoontable salt
2 teaspoonssugar
Topping
1 (28-ounce) candiced tomatoes
1/2 teaspoonsugar
1 smallgarlic clove, minced or pressed through garlic press (optional)
1/4 cupchopped fresh basil leaves
Table salt
8 ouncesfresh mozzarella (see note above), cut into 1-inch chunks
2 teaspoonsextra-virgin olive oil
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Pizza Margherita - Equipment List

Pizza Pan

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Pizza Margherita - Instructions

This recipe requires a pizza stone and a peel. Convection ovens will produce a lighter, crispier pizza,
and you will need to reduce the overall cooking time by a minute or two. You can shape the second dough
round while the first pizza bakes, but don't add toppings until just before baking. You can let the
dough rise overnight in the refrigerator if you like; place the dough balls on a floured baking sheet
and cover with plastic wrap coated with nonstick cooking spray. If using mozzarella packed in brine, pat
the cheese cubes dry before placing them on the pizza.

For the crust: Adjust oven rack to lowest position, set pizza stone on oven rack, and heat oven to 500
degrees. In liquid measuring cup, whisk yeast into water to dissolve. In food processor fitted with
metal blade, process flours, salt, and sugar until combined, about 5 seconds. With machine running,
slowly add liquid through feed tube; continue to process until dough forms satiny, sticky ball that
clears sides of work bowl, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. (If after 1 minute dough is sticky and clings to blade,
add 1 to 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour and continue processing. If dough appears dry and crumbly, add
1 to 2 tablespoons water and process until dough forms ball.) Divide dough in half and shape into
smooth, tight balls. Place on floured counter or baking sheet, spacing them at least 3 inches apart;
cover loosely with plastic wrap coated with nonstick cooking spray and let rise until doubled in volume,
about 1 hour.

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Pizza Margherita - Instructions Continued


For the Topping: In clean bowl of food processor, process tomatoes until crushed, two or three 1-second
pulses. Transfer tomatoes to fine-mesh strainer set over bowl and let drain at least 30 minutes,
stirring occasionally to release liquids. Just before shaping pizza rounds, combine drained tomatoes,
sugar, garlic (if using), 1 tablespoon basil, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in bowl.

To Shape and Cook Pizzas: When dough balls have doubled in size, dust dough liberally with flour and
transfer balls to well-floured work surface. Press one ball into 8-inch disk. Using flattened palms,
gently stretch disk into 12-inch circle, working along outer edge and giving disk quarter turns. Lightly
flour pizza peel; lift edges of dough round to brush off any excess flour, then transfer dough to peel.
Spread thin layer of tomato topping (about 1/2 cup) over dough with rubber spatula, leaving 1/2 inch
border around edge. Slide onto stone and bake until crust begins to brown, about 5 minutes. Remove pizza
from oven with peel, close oven door, and top pizza with half of cheese chunks, spaced evenly apart.
Return pizza to stone and continue cooking until cheese is just melted, 4 to 5 minutes more. Transfer to
cutting board; sprinkle with half of remaining basil, 1 teaspoon olive oil, and pinch salt. Slice and
serve immediately. Repeat step 3 to shape, top, and bake second pizza.

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