The Loon’s Favorite Pizza

Homemade pizza dough and sauce with his favorite toppings (Italian meats, basil and parmesan), makes for a happy Loon…

Pizza Dough (use a bread maker for this version)

3/4 cup of water
1/4 cup of shaved parmesan cheese.
1 tablespoon of dried herbs, such as oregano, basil or parsley (or a combo of all)
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 teaspoon of salt
2.5 cups of bread flour (King Arthur is good)
1.5 teaspoons of active dry yeast
 
Put all the above into a bread machine, then put on ‘Dough’ cycle.  Keep an eye on it….if too dry, add a small dash of water.
 
Italian Pizza
Preheat oven to 550 degrees with pizza stone in the oven.
 
Fresh pizza dough
Fresh marinara
3/4 cup of good mozzarella
2 links of Italian sausage
1 cup of sliced pepperoni (find good pepperoni)
Shaved paremsan cheese
Dried oregeno and basil and red pepper flakes
1/4 cup yellow onion, finely diced 
Fresh basil, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
 
 
Get your wooden pizza peel (paddle), or the back side of baking sheets, and sprinkle a generous amount of yellow corn meal
 
When dough is ready, dump it out of the bread machine, and split in half.  For this version, you’ll only need 1/2 of the dough.  You can easily wrap the other half in plastic wrap and freeze for future pizza making.
 
Find a nice open area on your kitchen counter and sprinkle flour.  
 
At this point, you can work the dough like a professional pizza tosser, or you can get out your rolling pin, and start rolling out the dough.  Roll it out until it is nice and thin and will fit on the pizza peel (or back of the baking pan).
 
Gently place the dough on the pizza peel.  Pinch the outer sides of the dough a bit to make a nice edge of the crust.
 
Let the pizza stone stay in the oven for about 30 minutes.  This will make it nice and piping hot, similar to a brick oven.
 
Get your favorite Italian sausage.  Take 2 links, remove the casings, pinch off pieces and form into 1/4 inch balls.  Fry them up in a skillet with a little olive oil.
 
Next, spread fresh marinara sauce onto the dough.  How much?  This is a matter of taste…   I’d say about 3/4 cup.
 
Next, cover the pizza with freshly shredded mozzarela cheese.
 
Next, add pepperoni and the cooked sausage.
 
Sprinkle on freshly grated parmesan cheese.   Then some dried herbs, such as basil and oregano.  Then a few sprinkles of crushed red pepper.
 
Top with finely diced onion.
 
Brush the edges of the pizza with olive oil.
 
Take the pizza stone out of the oven.  Gently transfer the pizza from the peel onto the pizza stone.
 
Bake in the oven for about 12 minutes.  Keep an eye on the pizza, once the edges start to turn a beautiful brown, take out of the oven.
 
Sprinkle with freshly chopped basil.
 
Slice, cut, eat, and be happy.  Oh, and have nice glass of red wine handy while eating the pizza.
 
 

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