Olive Oil Pizza/Flatbread Crust by Hand (no mixer)

This is the same recipe (although halved) that I use to make my family’s pizza crust every week. The method, however, is different. This method is the one used to make a pizza crust or flatbread by hand – without a heavy-duty mixer. I highly recommend watching the accompanying video as it contains imperative examples on how to handle dough for an optimal result.

After the dough rises, you can choose how many flatbreads or pizzas to make. In the video I show how to make two 9×13 inch flatbreads, but this quantity of dough is also adequate to make 3 medium sized pizzas or six mini pizzas.

Ingredients:

3 1/2 cups all purpose flour

2 teaspoons yeast

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 1/3 cup warm water

1/4 cup olive oil

In a medium bowl, combine and stir the flour, yeast and salt.

In a small measuring bowl, measure warm water, then pour the olive oil into the water.

Using a fork, chopsticks, or a Swedish (also called a Danish) dough hook, stir very small bits of water at a time into the center of the bowl, making a “paste” and then slowly incorporating the dry flour from the rim of the bowl into the “paste” which will eventually turn into a dough. See video for instructions.

When almost all of the flour has been incorporated into the wet mixture, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and gently press the dough ball onto itself, by turning each edge toward the middle – almost like you are folding a paper envelope.

Once your dough seems to be holding a form, knead it for a few “turns” by folding one side of the dough on itself, then rotating it slightly, and folding it again. Do this about a dozen times, adding small bits of flour to prevent the dough from sticking to the surface.

Form the dough into a ball and cover with a clean cloth to rise. Let it rise (and rest) for about an hour.

Cut the dough ball in half (or in as many pieces as you wish) with a pastry cutter or a knife. Gently roll out each ball of dough using as much flour as you need to prevent the dough from sticking to the rolling pin or the work surface.

Pour a little olive oil into two 9×13 inch pans or 3 medium pizza pans. Place the stretched and rolled dough into the pan, then turn it over so each side is covered with oil.

Top and bake per your chosen recipe instructions, or based on your own creativity. Generally, this flatbread/pizza crust will crisp nicely in a 400 – 425 degree oven, after about 10 minutes.

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