Kindness is essential in our daily lives.
I will share weekly a new post with a message of how powerful kindness really can be.

Monday, February 27, 2012

How to Make Homemade Pizza Dough Using a Bread Machine

There's a story behind my bread-making machine worth sharing. To say my husband loves bread is an understatement. Subsequently, he presented a bread-making machine to me as a Christmas present many, many years ago. I made several attempts to produce homemade bread with this new piece of equipment but was never successful. At that time I was working a full-time job, running a household and probably had much less patience then than I do now. I decided I wasn't intelligent enough to work the darn thing so I put it away and forgot about it. Now skipping forward many, many years I decided to clean out some storage in the basement when I came across this piece of forgotten equipment. I brought it out of hiding and once again decided to attempt to put it to good use one more time. My husband couldn't understand how the process could possibly be that difficult and he finally came to the conclusion that the machine was malfunctioning. Duh. Now remember the time period has advanced several years while it was in storage. The bread-loving husband wasted no time. He took it back to store where he purchased it and asked for a replacement since this one hasn't worked from day one. With no questions asked he was given a new model as an even exchange. He brought it home to me and I've been baking with it ever since with little effort. I have a lot of respect for my new bread making machine and have rewarded it a position on the counter top where it belongs instead of in the dusty old basement.

Bread machines come with a booklet that provides the exact instructions and information necessary to operate and produce a great finished product with pizza dough being one of the easiest recipes to follow.

The ingredients are so simple it's frightening.

For 2 pounds of pizza dough:

3/4 tsp. salt
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. active dry yeast
1-1/4 cups warm water (115 F)
3 tbsp. olive or vegetable oil

Yes, that's all there is to it.

To prepare:

Add the following measured ingredients to the bread baking pan in the following order:

warm water (115 degrees F)
olive or vegetable oil
flour and salt

Before adding the yeast, use your finger to form a well (hole) in the top of the flour where you will pour the yeast. The yeast must never come into contact with a liquid when you are adding ingredients.

Prep done. Now return the baking pan to the breadmaker.

Carefully snap the baking pan into the breadmaker. Close the lid of the bread machine and plug the power cord into the wall outlet. Select dough setting  (see #7) and press Start/Stop. When the unit signals and display reads "0.00" press Start/Stop and remove dough. The whole operation will take 1-1/2 hours. It's not necessary to keep an eye on the baking process (so go ahead and do some laundry or make a salad and/or dessert) but be alert to stop the process when complete in 1-1/2 hours. 

Turn out the finished dough from the baking pan onto desired (lightly greased) pizza pan(s). Using your fingertips and/or the palms of your hands pat the dough evenly over entire pan(s). I always use a 12" x 17" pan for making pizza (see pic).

Really, it doesn't get any easier than this. Now the fun begins.

Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Spread the pizza sauce over the dough. (Hopefully you made the Pizza Hut copy-cat recipe I provided in another post.)

Sprinkle cheese over the sauce.

Add other desired toppings: pepperoni, sausage, peppers, onions, etc. and bake 15 -20 minutes or until crust is golden brown.

In reality, this post is being provided mainly for anyone who either does not own a bread machine (or has one stored in the basement somewhere) in support of it's usefulness.

This simple and easy pizza dough recipe is being shared in hopes that I can encourage someone else to join me in taking another step closer to self-sufficiency through the use of a simple piece of equipment such as a breakmaker. Then you too will feel the same great sense of satisfaction as I do when taking this masterpiece of a pizza from your oven and serving to your family and friends. Think how much fun this can provide as a family shared activity and WOW what a great learning experience for the kids to carry forward.

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