Who doesn’t like Pizza? My favorite is Napolitano style Pizza with Proscuitto and Arugula. Living in New York City, pizza is available practically on every corner. Some of the best pizza in the world can be found here, but my favorite style is Napolitano. Even though New York pizza is so good, I sometimes prefer to make my own. This way I can control the quality of the ingredients, and the result is a lighter, healthier pizza.
I tried for years to make my own pizza, but I was never satisfied with the pizza dough. It was never quite right, until my friend, Roberta, gave me her recipe. It is easy to make, and it comes out perfect every time for me.
Give it a try! Be creative–use any toppings you prefer.
Ingredients for pizza dough:
4 – cups all purpose flour
4 – tbls. olive oil
3 – tbls. sugar
1 1/4 -cups water
1 – envelope of dry yeast*
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2- lb. Proscuitto (thinly sliced)
1 – lb. fresh mozzarella
3 – tbls. Pecorino Romano cheese (optional)
*I use an Italian brand of yeast called Livieto di Birra, by Paneangeli. This is the secret to my success with pizza dough. If you can’t find the yeast, however, you can substitute any brand you prefer.
In a large bowl, add 4 cups of flour, and make a well in the center. Add the package of yeast, sugar, salt, olive oil, and 1 cup of water.
Mix with a fork to incorporate the ingredients and add the rest of the water if needed to bring the flour together. Turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead until smooth and soft about 4 minutes.
Rub a little oil in the same bowl and place the ball of dough in the center. Top with a drizzle of oil on top of the dough to prevent it from getting hard.
Cover with a towel and set in a warm area to rise for two hours.
After about 2 hours, the dough should at least double in size, then you are ready to make the pizza.
Time to Assemble the Pizza:
Place a ceramic pizza stone in the oven and preheat it to 500° (Use the Convection setting if you have it).
Divide the dough into three equal portions. Spread a little flour on a board or countertop, and with a rolling pin, roll out the dough into a 12″-14″ roundshape.
Place the dough on a piece of parchment paper. Spread a little marinara sauce, sprinkle with a little pecorino romano cheese (optional), and place small pieces of fresh mozzarella all over the surface.
Using a pizza paddle, slide it under the parchment paper and place it in the preheated oven on top of the pizza stone. Cook until the crush starts to brown and the cheese is melted and bubbly. Do not leave the pizza unattended. It cooks quickly. It takes about 4-6 minutes depending on your oven. Using the pizza paddle, lift the edge of the pizza to check the bottom. It should be browned lightly.
Remove the pizza and place it on a cutting board. Place thin slices of prosciutto over the pizza and top off with arugula. It’s ready to serve!