Homemade Pizza

Case of the Mondays. Always makes me think of Garfield. At least the weekend was laid back and nice. Watched Iron Man II (good stuff), baked/cooked, picked on my big bro, etc. Happy (Belated) Mother's Day to all!

After watching the movie, the bf and I were supposed to go to Maryland for a flip session. Then our tummy's growled, we sensed the traffic on glorious I-95, and stared at a Pizza Hut across the stop light. The clouds parted and a voiced whispered... "Make Pizza. Now."

This was my first time making a pizza from scratch and I'll be honest... it was pretty damn good. The crust was soft and the sauce was on point. I'm more of a thin crust, crispy pizza kid but this one was not super doughy. It was a perfect compromise for my palette and I cheesed the entire time munching.

Use any topping you would like! We used red/green peppers, onions, mushrooms, pepperoni, spinach, etc. Plus, put as much mozarella cheese as you desire.

Quick cheat on toppings: get them at the salad bar of your local grocery store. Save yourself the excess chopping, wasted leftovers, and extra $$. Allows you to have more variety and really cuts back on time!

Note... do not judge how we decorated the pizza. No, it's not flashy and perfect. It was just us being goofy and having fun in the kitchen :D

Crust
Modified from Pizza Dough

1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1 cup warm water
2 cups bread flour + 1/2 cup for kneading
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon basil
2 teaspoons white sugar

In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine 2 cups bread flour, olive oil, salt, white sugar, garlic powder, basil, and the yeast mixture; stir well to combine. Beat well until a stiff dough has formed. Brush lightly with olive oil. Cover and rise until doubled in volume, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 and make the sauce (see below).

Turn dough out onto a well floured surface. Using the extra 1/2 cup of flour, form dough into a round and roll out into a pizza crust shape. Cover with sauce (see below) and toppings and bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.

Sauce
Modified from Easy Pizza Sauce

1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
2 teaspoons ground oregano
2 teaspoons basil
2 teaspoons crushed red pepper (I like a little heat)
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons dried minced garlic
1 teaspoon ground paprika

In a medium bowl, mix together tomato sauce and tomato paste until smooth. Stir in the rest of the ingredients.

Have fun with it!