pepperoni pizza with onion 010

Perfect Pepperoni Pizza (recipe by “Oishii”)

I’m passionate about pizza. I appreciate all of the differences in the crust, sauce, cheese, and toppings that each pizza maker brings to the table. It seems like an infinite combination of possibilities, and it’s no wonder everybody has a favorite pizza.

I’ve been making my own homemade pizza for many years now, and I serve it with the utmost confidence to my friends and family. It has never failed me! The crust is slightly crunchy with a unique buttery taste. The sauce, made with canned crushed tomatoes, oregano, and crushed red pepper, is a simple yet authentic version used by any pizzaiola throughout Italy.  I prefer to use fresh mozzarella, which results in a silky texture and delicious flavor.

I have been meaning to share this recipe for some time. I hope you like it as much as I do. I’m not going to lie. This is a great pizza! The recipe makes enough for two 13″ pizzas.

Ingredients

Sauce
makes about 3 cups

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 3 large cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • kosher salt to taste

Dough
makes enough for two 13″ pizzas

  • 1 1/3 cups water
  • 2 packets (4 1/2 teaspoons) of active dry yeast
  • 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • dash kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Toppings

  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
  • 8 ounces thick sliced pepperoni
  • 2 small onions, diced

Preparation

Make the sauce: Heat oil in a frying pan on medium. Add crushed red pepper and garlic and stir.  Fry until garlic starts to brown, about a half minute, then quickly add canned tomatoes and oregano. Cook sauce until it thickens. Add kosher salt to taste. Cool before using. Can be made several days in advance and stored in the refrigerator.

Make the dough: Add 1 1/3 cups of water to a large glass measuring cup. Heat water in microwave to 100° – 110°F (lukewarm). Stir yeast into water until smooth. Combine flour, salt, and olive oil in a large bowl of an electric mixer.  Add yeast-water to the flour mixture and mix until just combined. Add a little flour if the dough is too sticky. Use the dough hook on the electric mixer and knead dough for 10 minutes. Alternatively, flour a work surface and knead the dough by hand until pliable.

Form the dough into a ball. Grease a large bowl with olive oil, and put the ball of dough in it. Turn the dough until it is lightly coated with oil. Cover loosely with a kitchen towel (flour sack towels work great), set in a warm place, and let it rise for 30-45 minutes. The dough will double in size.

Make the pizzas: Preheat oven to 425°F. Punch down dough and form into two balls. Lightly flour two baking stones and roll out each ball of dough directly on them. Spread 1/2 cup or more pizza sauce onto each pizza, and top with cheese, pepperoni, and onion. Bake in oven for 25 minutes or until golden brown.

Pizza Making References

“Basic Italian: Everything you need to live the dolce vita at home,” by Cornelia Schinharl, Sebastian Dickhaut, and Kelsey Lane
“Pizza: Any Way You Slice It,” by Charles and Michele Scicolone

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I discover from popular restaurants, cookbooks, food magazines (Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, etc.), tv shows, friends, family, and other blogs. I also develop my own. Please contact me if there is a recipe you would like the test kitchen to consider: michaelwbeyer@hotmail.com

If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Your feedback in the comments section below is essential to the success of this blog. -Michael

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