Click here for recipe and more pictures!
The original recipe from A Year In Bread follows along with my own pictures. I left the edges of the crust slightly thicker than the rest of the dough and it had a lovely chewy, bready quality that differed from the crisp bottom.
Pizza dough #2
kitchenMage's Overnight Pizza Crust
ice water 1 1/2 c | 355 ml | 12 oz | 340 g
bread flour 4 c | 0.95 l | 18 oz | 500 g
instant yeast 1 tsp | 11 ml | 1/8 oz | 3+ g
olive oil 2 tablespoons | 30 ml | 1 oz | 28 g
salt 1 tsp | 5 ml | 1/4 oz | 8 g
(These directions are for mixing by wand, err, I mean hand. Parenthetical directions are for those of you who are using a stand mixer.)
Mixing the dough
Important: Water temperature matters—the colder, the better. About 15 minutes before starting, combine 1 1/2 cups of water and add a handful of ice cubes. By the time you are ready for it, there will be very cold ice water waiting. Remember to remove any remaining ice before measuring. If you have room in the freezer, you can put the measured flour in it to chill for that same 15 minutes.
In mixing bowl, stir flour and yeast together just to distribute yeast. Add ice water and mix to combine into wet dough, about 1 minute. (mixer: use paddle attachment on low for 30-60 seconds) It will look like sort of like thick, lumpy pancake batter. Cover and stick back in refrigerator for 10 minutes.
Remove from refrigerator, drizzle oil on one corner of dough, drop salt on top of the oil, and stir to combine. Turn dough out on well-floured counter and knead for a couple of minutes. (You can add more flour if you need, or want a substantially thicker crust—I do at times—but this is better with less so give it a shot.) Place dough in clean bowl, cover and return to refrigerator for at least 5-6 hours, preferably overnight. (The dough can stay refrigerated for up to 3 days.)
(My dough on day 3. Note the structure and apparent "slackness" of the dough. Very different from any other dough I've worked with in the past. I loved the fact that I could prepare this days ahead and have on hand to be used all most at whim.)
Baking the pizza
When you get home from work, turn on the oven as high as it goes to get the stone really hot. Make sure the stone is in the oven (or is that just me who forgets?) It takes about an hour to thoroughly heat the stone. Fortunately, this is about the same amount of time it takes to finish preparing the crust, toppings and assembling the pizza—even allowing for interruptions from the small people. You can even toss a salad together.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and turn out on floured counter. Divide dough in half (or thirds for smaller pizzas) and refrigerate the portion you will not be using.
With well-floured hands, shape each portion of dough into a flat disc as large as possible without tearing the dough. When the dough starts to shrink back immediately after stretching, let it rest on counter for five minutes before continuing with shaping it.
With a bit of tweaking, this is a fairly versatile crust. If you like cracker-thin pizza, use less dough and stretch it thinner. (Amusingly enough, this is one of the few doughs I make that I can get a good windowpane from.) For thicker, breadier pizza, use a little more dough and stretch it less. (If you like your crust even thicker, go ahead and use more flour, starting with an extra 1/4 cup.)
When the crust is about the right size, place it on a parchment sheet, cover and let rise until you are ready to top it. If you turned on the oven when you took the dough out of the refrigerator, this should be another 30-45 minutes. It will not rise substantially, but it should warm to room temp and poof just a bit in spots.
(I didn't use parchment when I used my pizza pan. I divided the dough in half and created one pizza, fully topped, which I then froze for a later date.)
A simple topping of pesto and sun dried tomato (BC...before cheese)
And the final product. Note the crust!