Simple Pleasures

While Emily is at her art class each week  I  to go to the library  and just sit by myself and read. A simple pleasure! They have a small coffee shop ( in the library!), free magazines, ( a thrifty gals treasure), and of course tons of books.
 I am really into learning all I can about making artisan style breads this year.  I found a lovely book:  Amy's Bread By Amy Scherbert and Toy Kim Dupree. I was sucked into the whole story of how this gal took her love of baking and bread and made it her life work. This book takes the secrets of baking and makes them usable and understandable to folk like me!
Take a stroll around their web site. http://www.amysbread.com/
Today I made pizza dough with Amy's recipe. It was super easy to assemble, easy to handle and spin out onto the pan. By far the best dough I have ever made. Purely a simple pleasure! Here is her recipe with a few changes in the process.
Versatile Pizza Crust
Very warm water ( 105 to 115 ) 1 1/4 cups plus 4 Tablespoons
Active dry yeast  1 1/4 teaspoons
Unbleached all pourpose flour  3 cups
Olive oil  2 Tablespoons
salt 2 1/2 teaspoons  ( we like garlic so I use garlic salt)

  • Combine the warm water and yeast in a large bowl and stir to dissolve the yeast. Add the flour, olive oil and salt and mix with your fingers to bring the wet and dry ingredients together.
  • When the dough becomes a shaggy mass, move it to a lightly floured surface and knead until it becomes smooth and elastic, 5 to 7 minutes ( I actually do this step in the bowl and avoid adding extra flour) This dough should not be too dry..if necessary , add warm water 1 tablespoon at a time until you have a soft, pliable dough. The key is to NOT over work the dough and NOT add extra flour.
  • Gently shape into a ball and place in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature untill it has doubled in volume. ( 45 minutes to an hour)
  • Set oven to 450 about 30 minutes before baking .
  • This dough makes 4, 9inch pizzas or in our case one very large pizza. Divide your dough according to the pan or pans you plan to use.
  • Dust the pans the corn meal. Shape gently . ( I have actually learned how to spin the dough ) Allow dough to rest about 10 minutes before adding toppings of your choice.
  •  Brush edges with olive oil.
Bake at 450 for 15 to 20 minutes.
I start the dough as soon as breakfast is over and the pizza is hot out of the oven in time for my kids when they come home from work for lunch.
This is on a 20 inch pizza pan. 
 Toppings. We always put the cheese on top of the toppings.
 This made the house smell wonderful!
Sometimes I just make what we call cheese bread. I sprinkle the dough with mozzarella cheese only. ( no sauce , no other toppings) This is so good as a side dish with spaghetti or lasagna.


  1. Yum!!!!! We always make one like this too...I have a daughter that does not like red sauce at all.....so she has cheese bread.

  2. Oh my, this looks so good! I love homemade pizza. And I love having a little time to myself when I drop Grace off for her art class, as well. :-)


Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you. Psalms 143:8