Pizza Dough


Sponge Ingredients:

Dough Ingredients:

Pans and Parchment Paper:


  1. In a large bowl dissolve yeast in 1½ cups warm water.
  2. Add 1½ cups flour and ¼ cup olive oil to the bowl. With a spatula, stir for 1 minute. Batter will have the consistency of soft pudding.
  3. This is your sponge.
  4. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap. Let it rest in a warm place, free from drafts, overnight or up to 2 days. The longer the sponge ferments, the better the flavor of the pizza dough.
  5. Transfer the sponge to a work bowl.
  6. Add salt and 2 cups of flour to the work bowl.
  7. Using an electric mixer or the paddle attachment for a stand mixer, beat on medium speed for 2 minutes.
  8. Remove mixer or paddle attachments from bowl.
  9. Insert a dough hook into the stand mixer.
  10. Mix in enough of the remaining flour to make a dough that is smooth and elastic.
  11. Wash and dry the bowl the sponge was in.
  12. Pour 1 tablespoon olive oil into the bottom of the bowl.
  13. Place the dough in the bowl.
  14. Move the dough around to make sure that oil covers the entire surface of the bowl.
  15. Turn the dough over so that the entire dough ball is oiled.
  16. Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise on the kitchen counter for 1½ hours. NOTE: You can make the dough in the morning and let it rise for up to 8 hours.
  17. Tear off 2 sheets of parchment paper. Each one should be approximately 20-inches long.
  18. Place each piece of parchment paper on a separate work surface.
  19. Lightly dust the parchment paper with cornmeal.
  20. Punch down the dough.
  21. Turn dough out onto a floured surface, cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 10 minutes.
  22. Split the dough into two equal halves and form into round balls.
  23. Place each ball of dough directly in the center of the prepared pieces of parchment paper.
  24. If you are using a baking stone place the dough directly on a floured pizza peel, press out into a 14-inch round, and assemble as directed below.
  25. Beginning in the center of each dough ball use the palm of your hand to gently press each ball into a 14-inch round.
  26. Get out two 16-inch pizza pans.
  27. Slide each pizza pan under the parchment paper so that both the paper and the round end up on the pizza pan.
  28. Assemble and bake pizza as directed.


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Recipe from Baking With Julia, by Dorie Greenspan. New York: William Morrow (1996).