Pizza is one of the most popular meals in the world. Whether it’s Neapolitan from an Italian restaurant or takeaway from your local pizzeria. people love to kick back with their friends and family over a pizza. For my family, its regular dinner item on Friday was always pizza and a movie at home when the kids were younger. They’re now teenagers and they still like Pizza and Movie. The Kids Favorite pizza was always pepperoni, mushroom, and black olive. Mine and my husband are anything with lots of meat and peppers and onions.
We would always buy it from our local pizzeria but it got to a point we couldn’t afford a pizza and movie night. then it came a time when we couldn’t afford the pizza and we thought pizza night might have to come to an end. One day I decided I would buy the toppings needed for the family’s favorite pizza. found a recipe for making the pizza crust and the journey of making our pizza crust began. Sometimes I would make small individual pizzas and sometimes I will make 2 large pizzas.
What is cold fermentation?
Fermentation is the process of yeast eating carbohydrates and converting them to alcohol and carbon dioxide (CO2). (I know sounds complicated). but all you need to know is that yeast turns sugars in the flour into gas. This is what inflates the dough, and makes it grow larger.
As a side effect of the fermentation process, the natural flavors of the flour will enhance, leaving you with more flavorful pizza dough!
How long should you cold ferment pizza dough?
I recommend leaving the dough balls for at least 24 hours. The dough can be used sooner, but it will not be as flavorful.
Ingredients For Cold Fermented Pizza Dough
Using the right ingredients is essential when you’re making pizza. Making pizza dough without proper ingredients is like building a house without proper materials. I thus recommend spending some time and money getting the ingredients before you start baking. Unless of course you already have the ingredients than a step ahead of the game.
What is the best flour to use for cold fermentation dough?
I recommend using a 00 flour (double zero) for your cold fermented pizza dough. You can also use all-purpose flour or bread flour and make amazing pizza. but if you want the best result, 00 flour is the way to go. The reason is the flour is a fine ground, with high protein content and has stronger gluten. This will make the dough keep its shape longer. which is essential when you’re baking a long-rise dough. You want the dough to keep its structure during the rising time.
When baking pizza you should always use clean water. If you don’t have clean tap water, I recommend buying bottled water. You should aim to use water that’s around 20°C (68°F).
You can either use fresh or dried yeast. Fresh yeast tends to give you a little better flavor, but it doesn’t make that much of a difference. I think dry yeast is very convenient since it has a much longer shelf life than fresh yeast.
Good, fine sea salt is the best option but any salt you have will be just fine.
When it comes to topping, cold fermented pizza dough doesn’t dictate how you should top your pizza. You can use your favorite pizza sauce, cheese, and toppings. One common mistake is too many toppings. Keep in mind if you add too much sauce, too much cheese, or other toppings it will take longer to bake. and you will end up with a soggy and underbaked pizza
The Ideal Way to Bake Your Pizza
A Traditional Neapolitan pizza is baked in a wood-fired oven at around 900 °F (480 °C) for 60-90 seconds. When you’re wanting to re-create the same baking environment at home. You’re looking for two things a hot baking surface and hot radiating heat from above. There does need to be a balance between the two or you end up with burnt pizza and raw toppings. (And that’s not what we’re looking for)
With a little bit of testing and experiments, I have come up with a couple of different ways of achieving this. In a home oven or If you have a home pizza oven that’s great.
What you’ll need for the perfect pizza
Whether you are baking pizza in a pizza oven or at home. You’re going to need a pizza peel to transfer the pizza in and out from the pizza oven. I bought my pizza stone quite a few years ago it is well seasoned but you can buy them pretty much anywhere.
Making pizza in a home oven
The easiest and cheapest option is to make your pizza in your home oven. All you have to do is set the temperature and heat your pizza stone. Put your pizza in the oven until the pizza is bubbly and looking delicious and your set.
Baking in a pizza oven
Things can be a little easier in a pizza oven because a pizza oven can reach the desired temperature. If you already own a pizza oven, you already know how to use it. I purchased a small gas-powered Ooni 16 last year and have been quite happy with it. There is a little bit of a learning curve with it, but I have been very happy with it. It is super quick for pizza and other quick breads. All you have to do is preheat the oven to get it as close as possible to 900°F (480°C). Then bake the pizza for 60-90 seconds. Or until crispy and the toppings are baked and the cheese is all nice and bubbly.
Fermented Pizza dough (Poolish)
- 1 Pizza Stone
- 1 Pizza Oven Optional
- 1 Stand Up Mixer Optional
- 190 grams All purpose Flour
- 180 ml Water Room Temperature
- ½ tsp Instant dry Yeast
- 250 ml Water Room Temperature
- 350 grams 00 Flour You can use All Purpose Flour
- 2 tsp Sugar
- 1-1/2 tsp Salt
- In a large bowl with a wooden spoon, or in a stand up mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine flour, water, and dry yeast until smooth. Cover with a damp dishcloth and let sit at room temperature for 2 hours or until doubled in volume. The time might be a little different depending how cool your home is when your doing this step.
- Add the water to the bowl of Poolish. Whisk thoroughly to dissolve the mixture in the water. Add the remaining ingredients (water, flour, sugar, and salt) and mix well. On a lightly floured work surface with your hands, or in the stand up mixer, knead the dough for 5 minutes or until smooth.
- On a work surface and with floured hands, fold the dough over itself and form into a ball. Place the dough in a clean, lightly oiled bowl. Cover tightly and let rest for minimum 2 hours or refrigerate overnight. The longer you can the dough in the fridge the more flavor you will have in your dough.
- Keeping the dough in the bowl, sprinkle the surface with flour. Turn the bowl over, letting the dough fall onto the work surface. Cut the dough into two equal portions. With floured hands fold each piece of dough over itself and form a ball. This is where you would freeze it if that your plan see note. Let sit on the work surface for 30 minutes before rolling out and adding toppings