If you are after an authentic pizza base like the ones in the Italian pizzerias, then this authentic Neapolitan pizza dough recipe will not disappoint. To achieve best results, make sure to use a high protein flour (commonly sold as baker’s flour or pizza & bread flour) as this has more gluten in it which will ensure you get a base that is light and airy but sturdy. This can be cooked in any type of oven…but my favourite is the wood fired oven as it cooks quickly and gives a great charcoal flavour to the base.
Ingredients:

  • 1kg high protein (baker’s) flour
  • 620ml lukewarm water
  • 4 tsp salt
  • 4 tsp dried yeast
  • Some extra flour for dusting your bench top when rolling out the dough
Method:

    1. Dissolve yeast in approximately 100ml of lukewarm water. Let it sit for 5 minutes until it starts to form bubbles on top.
    2. Place the rest of the water in a mixing bowl. Sift approximately 100g of the flour into the water and stir well to combine so there are no lumps.
    3. Add the yeast mixture to the water/flour mixture and let it sit for about 5-10 minutes until bubbles start forming on top. The flour will provide food for the yeast to grow.
    4. Meanwhile, sift the remainder of the flour into a mixing bowl or a bench mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add the salt to the flour and mix well.
    5. Turn the mixer on the slow setting, if using one, and slowly add the yeast/water/flour mix a little at the time until all used up. When the dough forms a ball around the dough hook, stop the mixer and remove the dough from the bowl. Alternatively mix the dough by hand in a mixing bowl until well combined.
    6. Sprinkle some flour on a bench top and knead the dough by hand until smooth and elastic. The dough should not be too sticky or too dry.
    7. Place the dough in a clean bowl, cover with cling wrap and leave to rise in a warm, draught free place, until doubled in volume.
    8. Measure out a ball of dough in your hands. (About the size of a tennis ball for small pizzas.) On a floured surface, stretch the dough out with your hands, working from the centre of the ball out and turning the dough whilst doing so until the dough is the desired size. The dough should be thinner in the middle and slightly higher around the edge (to form the “cornicione” or the puffy crust like good Italian pizzas have).
    9. Garnish with your favourite toppings (remember less is more on a thin base) and bake at 220 degrees Celcius until the crust is golden brown and the toppings are cooked.

Variations:

    1. Use this same dough recipe to make small ciabatta loaves.