Planning Ahead – Multigrain Pizza Dough

When it comes to pizza, I’m up for anything. Italian, Greek, delivery, on an English muffin pizza, deep dish, thin crust – I like it all.

On average, we probably have pizza for dinner once a week. I blame my Dad for this, since when my sisters and I were growing up, he always made sure we got our weekly pizza fix. I don’t see our pizza “addiction” as much of a problem though, especially since the hubs and I often make our own pizza at home. When you make your own pizza you can make it a bit healthier because you can control the ingredients – and it can be as simple or elaborate as you would like.

It doesn’t take very long for a pizza to come together if you plan ahead; in fact, you can probably make your own pizza faster than you can place an order and wait for delivery! I like to make a large batch of pizza dough in advance, let it rise once, then divide the dough and freeze it for later use.

When I first started making pizza dough, I made this recipe from The Joy of Cooking. It’s a great, basic recipe, but I really wanted to find a wheat dough that tasted just as good. I made several attempts, substituting various amounts of whole wheat flour, whole wheat pastry flour, white wheat flour, but nothing seemed to be just right (they were still edible).

Then, one day I ran out of freezer dough. I didn’t have time to make a fresh batch, but I had time to stop at the store. And, at Dave’s Marketplace, mixed in with the various white and wheat pizza doughs, (many of which are made in-house!) I discovered multigrain pizza dough. The second I bit into that first multigrain crust, I knew I needed to recreate it – and much to my surprise, the hubs felt the same way! He tends to go either way about wheat crusts, but this was one he actually liked!

Multigrain Pizza Dough

This is a slightly adapted version of this recipe from Sustainable Pantry (according to my comment on their page, I found it back in April of 2010!).

One batch makes approximately 38oz of dough, which makes 3 thin crust or 2 regular crust pizzas.

Ingredients

  • 10 oz unbleached all purpose flour
  • 12 oz whole wheat flour or whole wheat pastry flour (Note: You can use white wheat flour if you like the taste of it, I find that it changes the flavor of the final product)
  • 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 1.5 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1/2 cup soaked grains* – 1/4 cup oats, 2T ground flax, 2T cornmeal, combined with 1/2 cup water (See note below)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1.5 cups water

*Note: Choose any grains / seeds you like to make up the 1/2 cup of grains. In addition those listed above, I’ve used sunflower seeds and sesame seeds. If using seeds or crunchy grains like millet – you may want to soak the mixture overnight, using enough water to cover the mixture by an inch. Personally, I skip this step, I like a bit of crunch in my multigrain dough.

Method

A food processor helps this recipe come together quickly. If you don’t have one, you can use a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment just until the dough starts to come together and then use the dough hook for the last minute or so.

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  • Add the flours, italian seasoning, yeast, and sea salt to your food processor and mix for ~30 seconds to combine the dry ingredients.
  • Add the grain mixture and the olive oil.
  • Turn the food processor on, and with it running, add 1 cup of water. Slowly add the rest of the water until the dough forms a ball. Leave the food processor on for an additional 30 seconds.
  • Remove the dough from the food processor and let it rise in a large oiled bowl, tightly covered with plastic wrap or a damp towel for about an hour, or until doubled in size.
  • Separate the dough into 2 or 3 dough balls (for large pizzas) and freeze it in freezer bags.
  • When you’re ready to use the dough, remove it from the freezer in the morning and allow it to thaw in the fridge until dinnertime.

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Pizza – It’s what’s for dinner

Once your dough is ready (or thawed), you’re ready to make pizza! Sometimes, I use my pizza stone, but here’s my no fail way to make pizza on a busy weeknight.

  • Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.
  • Spray the pan you’re using with canola oil and put your dough ball right on the pan. Give your dough a quick spray with the oil.
  • Use your fingertips to press the dough out into the pan. If the dough is too cold, you can cover it with a towel to keep it warm and wait a few minutes, or you can just power through. This should just take a couple of minutes.
  • Use a fork to poke some holes in the dough, then pre-bake the crust for 6-8 minutes.
  • Remove the crust from the oven and top it with your choice of sauce (tomato paste works great too), cheese, and toppings. Feel free to get creative, pizza is a canvas!
  • Bake for an additional 6-8 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the crust reaches your desired level of crispiness.

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One Response to Planning Ahead – Multigrain Pizza Dough

  1. Pingback: Getting it together – A few simple goals for 2012 | Faking It and Making It

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