Think of this pizza dough as a canvas and the contents of your refrigerator as the paints that create an edible work of art. Anything goes with pizza: try leftover slices of chicken, beef, or lamb; combine various cheeses, add raw or cooked vegetables, or herbs. The dough can be made a day ahead, or frozen for up to a month. Double the recipe and freeze half for a hectic day.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Sitting Time: about ½ hour
Baking Time: about 8 minutes
Yields: 2 to 3 servings for each pizza
Whole-Wheat Pizza Crust
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1 ½ cups warm water
3 to 3 ½ cups whole-wheat flour, or about 1 ½ cups all-purpose flower and 1 ½ cups whole-wheat flour
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
About 2 tablespoons cornmeal, for dusting
About 2 ½ cups chopped vegetables and/or meat
About 1 to 1 ½ cups grated cheese
About ½ cup tomato or other sauce
1. To make the pizza dough, mix the yeast with the water in a large bowl and place in a warm spot for 5 minutes, or until the yeast begins to bubble.
2. Sift 3 cups of the flour and salt into the yeast and gradually mix to form a ball. Mix in the olive oil and enough additional flour to form a soft ball. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and knead it until soft and elastic, about 5 to 8 minutes. Shape the dough into a ball and place it in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a clean tea towel. Place in a warm spot for about 1 hour, or until the dough has doubled in bulk.
3. Punch down the dough and reshape into a ball. Let sit another 20 minutes, or until the dough rises again. Divide the dough in half; you can freeze the other half or make 2 pizzas.
4. Roll out half the dough on a floured surface. Sprinkle a cookie or baking sheet with the cornmeal and place the dough on top. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
5. Add your toppings of choice and bake for about 8 minutes, or until the crust begins to turn golden brown and the cheese is bubbling and melted.