How to Make No-Knead Pizza Dough (No-Knead Pizza 101)
Jim Lahey's no-knead dough recipe from his book My Bread allows even the most inexperienced home cook to make delicious pizza with minimal effort. This high-hydration, slow-rise dough consistently produces puffy, crisp crusts, even on the first try.
For a snappy, Neapolitan-style crust, use all-purpose flour. Bread flour, which has a higher gluten content, makes a stretchier, stronger dough that can stand up to heavier toppings. In practice I find it's best to combine the two types of flour. Olive oil makes the dough softer and more workable, while sugar feeds the yeast, producing more carbon dioxide and therefore a more open crumb.
The best thing about this dough is that it's wet and sticky. Water develops the gluten proteins in the flour, causing the dough to stretch beautifully when the yeast produces a high volume of gas in the heat of the oven. This creates the light, puffy, chewy crust loved by Slice'rs everywhere.
The worst thing about this dough is that it's wet and sticky. The dough is undeniably hard to roll out, and you need to work quickly to prevent it from sticking to your work surface. Considering that rolling out the dough is the only difficult step in the entire process, this strikes me as an eminently fair trade-off.
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