No Need to Knead Pizza Dough


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This is the easiest pizza dough recipe you will ever try because the mixer does the kneading for you and it is also completely fool-proof. If you enjoy making pizza at home get your favorite pizza sauce and toppings ready to impress your family and friends. 

 

2 3/4 cups bread flour

1 tsp. salt

1 1/2 tsp dry yeast

2 tsp. sugar

1 cup warm water (about 110 degrees)

2 tbsp. olive oil (plus 1 tsp. for coating dough)

 

Place flour and salt into bowl of stand mixer with a dough hook attached.

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Place yeast, sugar and water into a large measuring cup and stir. Set timer for 10 minutes.

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After 10 minutes add 2 tbsp. of oil to yeast mixture then pour it into the flour and with the mixer on #2 setting and set timer for 10 minutes.

Then remove dough from bowl and pour remaining 1 tbsp. of oil into the bowl. Then roll the dough into a ball  on the counter then roll it around in the bowl to coat the dough with oil ( this keeps the dough from drying out while proofing).

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Place the dough back into the bowl and cover with plastic wrap.

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Allow the dough to proof (rise) for 1 hour or until doubled in size in a warm place in your kitchen.

After 1 hour remove the dough from the bowl and you are ready to create your masterpiece.

This recipe will make 2 – 10″ thin crust round pizzas or you can roll out the dough into a 9″ X 13″ sheet pan and allow to rise for an additional 10 minutes before you begin topping for 1 thick crust pizza.

Best Italian Sausage Bread Recipe


best italian sausage bread

I call this the “Best Italian Sausage Bread” because it is my #1 go to party recipe. It can be prepared ahead of time then it can be placed in the oven when my guests arrive. As it cooks it fills the house with the sweet aroma of an Italian street fair and the smell of fresh-baked bread. When it comes out of the oven my guests are always so impressed. I wish I had a better picture  but by the time I found my camera  this is all I had left. My guests ate the rest.

Bread dough:

3 cups bread flour

2 teaspoons salt

1 cup warm water

1 packet yeast

1 teaspoon sugar

1 tablespoon olive oil

Stuffing:

1 pound  Italian sweet sausage – casings removed

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 large green peppers – cut into strips

2 medium onions – large dice

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1/2 teaspoon oregano

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

4 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese

1 egg beaten

4 teaspoons sesame seeds

Directions:

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Place the bread flour and salt into bowl of stand mixer fitted with a dough hook.

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Put water in a large measuring cup.  Add yeast and sugar to the water and stir to dissolve.  Set timer for 10 minutes to allow yeast to proof.

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Add oil to the water mixture. Pour liquid into mixer bowl.  Set mixer on number two and knead for exactly 10 minutes.

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Remove dough ball from mixer bowl then put a drop of oil into bowl of mixer. Then roll the dough around in oil to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set aside to rise for 1 hour. Dough should double in size.

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While waiting for the dough to rise, use a large skillet to cook sausage until the pink is gone and it begins to brown. Breaking up all large clumps. Place sausage into a strainer or on paper towels to drain off excess fat and set sausage aside.

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Add oil to the same skillet and sauté the onions and peppers over med heat for about 4 minutes or until onions are clarified then add the salt, pepper and oregano to the skillet. Add the sausage back to the pan and cook for an additional 4 minutes then set aside to cool.

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Roll dough to a 12 x 18 inch rectangle. With the longest side facing you.

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Cover the dough with the sausage mixture leaving 1 inch on left and right edges and on the side that is away from you.

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Cover sausage mixture with shredded mozzarella. The sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

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Brush the left, right and the far edge of the dough with some of the egg wash.

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Starting from the near edge, roll the dough away from yourself.  Like a jelly roll. Leave the seam underneath the roll.

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Tuck the ends under the roll to seal. Cover the roll with a towel and allow to rise 30 minutes.

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Remove the towel and brush the outside of the roll with egg wash. Sprinkle the roll with sesame seeds. Place roll on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Optional – At this point you have 2 choices

1) bake the bread

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2) you can place it  in the fridge for up to 1 hour and wait for guests to arrive before baking. Then  allow it to return to room temperature  before baking.

 Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Eggplant Caponata


Caponata

Caponata

 

I get many requests from my friends for Vegetarian dishes. This is a Sicilian recipe for a sweet and sour eggplant relish that can be served on crackers or crostini. I also use it as a sandwich spread when I make an Italian Hoagie sandwich. Take one bite and you will feel like  you are in Italy…Ciao Baby!

 

Ingredients:

1 large eggplant (peeled and diced into half-inch cubes) (4 cups)

1 medium onion finely diced

1 stick celery finely diced

4 cloves garlic finely diced

1 – 16 ounce can of petite diced tomatoes

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1/4 cup of coarsely diced Manzanilla olives

1/4 cup coarsely diced black olives

1/4 cup pine-nuts

1/4 cup raisins

3 tablespoons capers

crushed red pepper to taste

Salt and pepper

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

3 tablespoons sugar

Fresh basil for garnish

Directions:

Heat up a large skillet with olive oil over medium high heat. When the oil is hot add eggplant in one layer  to pan. Cook for 4 minutes (do not stir). After 4 minutes turn over the eggplant in the pan to brown the other side for an additional 4 minutes. Remove eggplant to a separate bowl and set aside. Add onions and celery to the skillet with additional oil if needed. When the onions have become translucent add the garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and add the remaining ingredients to the pan.  Cook at a low simmer for 8 minutes or until the eggplant is tender. Serve at room temperature.