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It took me 6 years to find a basic pizza dough recipe that I actually liked. 6 years!
Most were either too bland, too yeasty, too something, and I often resorted to the kind that comes in a can because it was easy, and tasted better than anything I could come up with.
But I still felt guilty for buying a product I knew I could make myself. So, I found this gem of a recipe hidden in my Taste of Home cookbook for Sausage Calzones, and put it to the ultimate test – using it as our Bacon/Mozzarella ‘Zones dough first, and then trying it as a pizza base.
There are so many good qualities about this dough, but one of my favorites is the pillowy softness it maintains even after it has fully risen and baked.
The flavor is perfect too, and really doesn't need any seasonings, although if I'm making pizza, I do like to sprinkle a little garlic powder on the dough before the sauce – just to give it a little something-something.
To make pizza
Spread dough into a greased round pizza pan or stone and sprinkle with your favorite toppings. Put in the oven at 400 degrees F for 18-22 minutes, depending on how crispy you want the crust.
This pizza does not last long around here – hence, I didn't get a picture until half of it was eaten!
To make calzones
Calzones are not that much harder to put together than pizza, they just take a few more steps.
First, cut dough into fours and spread each section one at a time on a greased pan.
Fill one side with your favorite toppings, then fold over and press the seams so none of that yummy goodness comes out.
I also like to sprinkle my calzones with a little bit of Parmesan on the top before I bake. Then pop them in the oven at 400 degrees F for about 15-20 minutes, until they start turning golden brown.
They come out so cheesy and gooey….it's carb heaven!
Next on my list is to experiment with bread sticks using this dough. I'm imagining Parmesan cheese, with perhaps some basil, and toasting it to a crispy brown on top. Oh, and with lots of butter. I'll be sure to let you know the results!
The Best Homemade Pizza Dough
Yield: 4 servings
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 3/4 cup warm milk
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1-1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 3 to 3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1. In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, oil, salt, sugar, and 2 cups flour; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
2. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
3. Punch dough down. Turn onto lightly floured surface; divide into 4 pieces if making calzones, or keep whole and spread on a round pan if making pizza. Sprinkle with favorite seasonings and toppings.
4. Bake at 400 degrees F
Pizza: 18-22 minutes. Calzones: 15-20 minutes or until golden brown; Serve with marinara sauce, if desired.
Recipe adapted from The Taste of Home Baking Book
Kitchen Tip: Make a double batch of calzones and freeze the extras to have an easy meal later. They still taste yummy!
Total Cost: $.85 or $.21 per serving (not including toppings)
You can also download this recipe for The Recipe Binder from Creative Savings!
Don't have The Recipe Binder? Find out how I use this all-in-one tool to organize my recipes and manage everything I need to do in the kitchen. It's the exact system I used to get my own cookbooks, loose pages, and recipe cards in order…and works like a charm! Read it HERE.
What are your favorite pizza/calzone combinations?
Linking up here: Homemaker's Challenge
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