Pizza Margherita

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Pizza Margherita

star rating (21) rate this recipe »
Published prior to 2008

2 teaspoons instant yeast
1 1/2 cups warm water (100°F to 115°F)
2 tablespoons honey
3 1/2-3 3/4 cups King Arthur 100% Organic White Whole Wheat Flour
1 tablespoon vital wheat gluten
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons sesame seeds

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 ripe plum tomatoes, sliced into thin rounds
2 cups diced fresh mozzarella cheese
12 fresh basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon bread salt or other fine salt

Preheat the oven to 425°F. If you're using a baking stone, preheat the oven to 450°F.

To make the dough: Stir together the yeast, water, honey, and 1 cup of the flour in a large mixing bowl, in the bowl of a stand mixer, or in the bucket of a bread machine. Cover the mixture and let it stand for 30 minutes; it'll be very soupy.

Add 2 cups of the remaining flour, the vital wheat gluten, and the salt to the yeast mixture, along with the olive oil and sesame seeds. Mix and knead the dough-by hand, mixer, or bread machine-for about 5 minutes, adding more flour as necessary to make a smooth elastic dough. Place it in a lightly greased bowl, cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap, and allow the dough to rise for at least 2 hours, or until it's doubled in size.

Assembling the pizza: Divide the dough in half, roll each piece on a floured surface into a 13" to 15" round (depending on the size of your pizza pans), and place the rounds on lightly oiled pans. (A 13" diameter yields a thin crust; a 15" diameter yields a cracker-thin crust.) Turn in the overhanging edge to form a rim. If you plan to use a baking stone to bake the pizza, place the dough on two baker's peels, dusted with cornmeal or surfaced with parchment.

Brush each round with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Divide the tomato slices between the rounds. Divide the cheese and sprinkle it on top of the tomatoes. Divide the basil leaves and sprinkle them on top of the cheese. Divide and sprinkle on the salt and the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil.

Bake the pizzas in the pans for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the top and bottom crusts are nicely browned. If you're using baking stones, bake for 15 to 25 minutes (leaving the pizza on the parchment), or until the crust is nicely browned on the bottom. Cut into wedges and serve immediately, garnished with additional fresh basil, if desired. Yield: 2 pizzas, about a dozen large slices.


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  • star rating 01/09/2015
  • winnie from sacramento, ca
  • super easy, delivers a chewy crusty bubbly pizza crust! I used my baking steel and used a whole wheat flour and bread flour mixture. Turned out really well. After dividing the dough in 1/2 I froze the 2nd half for later. nice .
  • star rating 12/07/2014
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  • star rating 09/10/2014
  • Chris from North Providence, RI
  • I made big mistakes making this dough... and it tasted excellent. I didn't have vital wheat gluten and choose to omit sesame seeds. I made a double batch half white whole wheat half AP. Made the starter with no problem. Then I added my flour and mixed for five minutes. And still had soup. So I add more flour and mixed more. Still very wet, not forming a ball. More flour, more mixing....and so on. BY the time this thing seemed the the right consistency, had risen and was ready for shaping, it was as tight as all-get-out, and cooked up like a loaf of bread. But it was so tasty! lol Going to try again this weekend, and I'm making note to learn from my mistakes. A) Don't hold back with the extra flour, apparently mine is very saturated. B) Mix for five minutes and STOP. C) don't be overly concerned about "smooth and elastic dough", it's pizza dough, it's supposed to be on the wet side, it's whole wheat it won't get totally smooth my AP/bread flour
    Aha! The whole wheat flour and the all purpose flour absorb liquid differently! For best results with this recipe - use all white whole wheat flour as written (it really does absorb more liquid than the all purpose flour). We'd love to hear the results when you make this change. Happy Baking! Irene@KAF
  • star rating 12/06/2013
  • Carrie from Portland, ME
  • Fantastic!! Makes a great thin crust if rolled thin, also makes a nice thicker crust, if not pulled out as flat. I always use white wheat (I have a flour mill at home). This is one of the best pizza crust recipes I have used!
  • star rating 03/02/2013
  • ny lady from KAF Community
  • I omitted wheat vital gluten and substituted flaxseed to sesame seed. It doubled up the size in less than 2 hours. My thin crust pizza was done in 15 minutes. Both my kids love it. Will definitely make it again.
  • star rating 02/11/2013
  • 4Gimli from KAF Community
  • I don't think I'll order out for pizza anymore! I made the crust using the recipe as a guide, but I forgot the salt, and added Italian seasoning to it. I only buy whole wheat flour, both the white & red. After rolling out half the dough, I realized I needed a gadget! So I balled up the dough & re-rolled it to a smaller round, to fit a dinner plate. Then I loaded all my toppings (lot's), transferred them to the stones in the oven. The result was two thick crust "personal sized" pizzas! YUM!
  • star rating 05/19/2012
  • clwilson1 from KAF Community
  • I'm almost ashamed to admit that I totally screwed up this recipe but it was so forgiving that it still turned out amazing! First, I was in a hurry yesterday morning and looking for a pizza crust that didn't need to rise overnight. I was also out of regular flour and wouldn't be able to go to the store until much later in the day. When I saw this one, I was ecstatic because I knew I had a bag of whole wheat flour in the freezer just begging to be used. When I was ready to start making the crust around 2 pm, the 1st problem arose- what I thought was a half a bag of whole wheat flour only contained a scant cup. Still needing pizza dough for dinner, I quickly decided I'd make up the difference with bread flour. Knew it would turn out differently but forged ahead anyway. The only change I made was to add a spoon full of KF Pizza dough flavor and omit the wheat gluten which I didn't have. Problem #2- I didn't reread the recipe and just measured all the ingredients into my mixer! Then I looked at the recipe again and mentally began cursing because I know better but was still in too much of a hurry. Not wanting to toss the bowl & contents and still craving homemade pizza, I forged ahead again. Set it aside to rise (covered in plastic! I did read that part!) and finally went to the grocery store. It had doubled in size by the time I was ready to proceed and I was feeling a little better about the outcome. I had to add about 1/4 cup of flour to get it to a good kneading consistency and it was too elastic to roll so I stretched and shaped by hand into 2 crusts on parchment. Added toppings and then transferred to my stone in the oven. They browned and puffed nicely during the baking and looked/smelled amazing! The taste was equally wonderful and it was proclaimed 'Excellent!' by both husband and daughter! I didn't confess my screw-up to them and basked in the compliments but plan to make this again soon using the correct ingredients/procedures to see if it's better than my fluke.
  • star rating 01/26/2012
  • Dana from Idaho
  • For a whole wheat crust, this was great. Nice dough to work with. I made one pizza with the olive oil sauce as directed and the other with a traditional red sauce... the winner... hands down the red sauce. In our opinion using the olive oil really made the crust taste whole wheat. The kids didn't really care for it. We will be making this healthy and yummy crust again, but using red sauce. As a fan of the now and later KAF crust, can you freeze the other whole wheat crust to use later?
    Yes, you may freeze the dough after the first rise. If you are freezing for any length of time, additional yeast is recommended. Elisabeth
  • star rating 10/07/2011
  • Natasha from Iowa
  • I wanted a delicious whole wheat pizza crust from scratch and I found it! The process was straight forward- just dump in all the ingredients and let it rise in two steps. I used the kitchen aid dough hook for mixing. Definitely put the tight plastic wrap over the bowl so that it will rise faster-- I forgot that step and just used a towel. When I used the plastic wrap I got double the amount than the first time. The crust was yummy and easy to roll out, even for thin crust without tearing apart. Definitely will pass this along to friends and fam.
  • star rating 04/05/2011
  • cookinggram from KAF Community
  • I made this today, in my bread machine. I started with a total of 3 cups flour- had to add about 3 more tbsp while dough still oscillating- just enough to take the dough away from sides of machine. In less than 45 min., the dough had peaked at the top of the machine door. Had to remove and put in larger container to continue rising. The dough is light and airy. Will make much more of this dough in the future. Thank you for the healthy recipe.
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