This versatile dough can be formed into a thin or thick crust pizza—of you can simply bake the dough into a loaf of bread- either in the bread machine or by removing the dough after the final rise cycle and placing it in a bread pan, or free forming it and allowing it to rise until double in bulk. Bake for 40 minutes in a preheated 350 degrees F oven.
Place all the ingredients in the machine, program for dough or manual and press start. The dough will be on the soft side at first, but will become firmer as the gluten develops through the kneading process. At the end of the final cycle remove the dough to a lightly floured work surface.
If you like thin crust, then you should preheat the oven before you roll the dough out either on a greased or corn meal dusted 18" round pan, two 9" round pans, or into a 17 x 11" baking pan. Spread the sauce in a very thin layer over the dough, leaving a 1 inch border unsauced and sprinkle with cheese before baking. Do not allow the dough to rise—bake it immediately.
If you want a thick crust, roll and pat the dough into a 14 inch circle and place it on a corn meal dusted pizza pan or on a pizza peal lightly dusted with corn meal. Spread the dough with the sauce, leaving a 1 inch border unsauced. Sprinkle with cheese and allow to rise, uncovered in a warm place for 20 to 30 minutes or until nicely puffed. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F with the rack or a pizza stone in the center position. Bake the pizza for 17 to 20 minutes, or until the crust is deep golden brown and the cheese has melted.
Since this sauce freezes beautifully it makes sense to make extra so you will have it on hand for next time. Store it in small plastic containers in the freezer and defrost at room temperature or in the microwave.
Makes about 1-1/4 cups
Rip the larger basil leaves in thirds and place them along with the garlic and nuts in a food processor or blender. Process or blend to a purée, then add the oil and pepper blending or processing just to mix. Taste before adding additional salt, as the cheese is quite salty.
Art by Patricia Murphy
This Archived Page created between 1994 and 2001. Modified August 2007
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