I think anyone who talks about “whole wheat” anything should be viewed skeptically. If they throw in words like healthy, nutritional and tasty, definitely view them skeptically. If the word easy creeps in there somewhere, they may need a talking to. From personal experience, whole wheat flour in bread, while very simple to put together, has a mind of its own when it comes to taste and moisture content. Trust me. I have a story about some muffins gone awry if you want to hear it. Just ask. And another story about some bread I made to eat, but decided to play football with instead. Ask about that one too.
I sort of screwed up today. I had planned on making a delicious looking pizza and posting the recipe for it. What I didn’t realize was that the dough has to rest in the refrigerator for at least eighteen hours. That put a kibosh on my pizza. As I was making the dough though, I thought that the day may not be a total loss after all. Perhaps I could post the recipe I used for that instead. Tomorrow, I’ll just follow up with the pizza recipe and I’ll use the review of the dough as a bonus. Sometimes I feel like Hannibal on the A-Team. I love it when a plan comes together.
From what I can gather, most whole wheat pizza dough comes out extremely dry and tough to eat. The goal is to end up with something that resembles regular pizza dough – you know, crisp, soft and chewy, but with the added benefit of the nutty and wheaty flavor that whole wheat flour naturally offers. If you can’t get that, then why bother use whole wheat at all? The fine folks over at America’s Test Kitchen claim they have the solution.
What I learned is that, in order to obtain the desired result, you need to balance the whole wheat flour with bread flour. The higher gluten in the bread flour helps with the stretch and crispness of the cooked result. Also, in order to combat the moisture absorption of the whole wheat flour, more water needs to be added to the recipe. This additional hydration keep the dough from drying out as it cooks.
Since this strategy is new to me, I’m very curious as to how it turns out. Believe me when I say that I’ll report back on it. I’m not one for mincing words with it comes to dough.
Makes: 1 1/2 Pounds of Pizza Dough
1 1/2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour
1 Cup Bread Flour
2 Teaspoons Honey
3/4 Teaspoon Instant Yeast
1 1/4 Cups Cold Water
2 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1 3/4 Teaspoons Salt
In the bowl of a stand mixer, add all the flour, honey and yeast. When together, mix for about 1 minute until everything is combined well. Use a rubber spatula to assist if necessary.
With the mixer running, slowly add the water. Only run the mixer until everything in the bowl has come together. Don’t overmix. Again, use a rubber spatula to clean the sides of the bowl if necessary.
Once finished, let the dough sit for about 10 minutes to relax.
Add Oil, Salt & Knead
While still in the bowl, add the olive oil and the salt. Turn on the mixer to combine these additional ingredients. In general, this only takes a minute or so. Since the hook attachment on my mixer kept flopping the dough around without really mixing it, I had to carefully hold it with the spatula for it to work properly. That went well.
What you end up with at this point is some rather wet looking pizza dough. That’s what’s supposed to happen.
Oil your counter top lightly. Then, remove the dough from the bowl and place it on the counter. Knead for a minute and then form the dough into a ball. Place it in a large oiled bowl.
Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least eighteen hours and up to forty eight.
I’m excited to see what happens here. Will it be the best whole wheat pizza dough on the planet or will it be a flop? I’ll let you know tomorrow when I post the follow up pizza recipe.
Curious about other whole wheat pizza dough recipes? See what these fellow bloggers have to say:
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