Posted by: Jonjon | July 5, 2009

Pizza – Jim Lahey’s Pizza Bianca 9/10

Pizza – Jim Lahey’s Pizza Bianca 9/10

63% flour, 1.6% salt, 0.8% sugar, 0.8% yeast, 10% olive oil for drizzling. Mix for 10 minutes, and rest for 2-4 hours room temperature, then nother 1 hour

3 cups all-purpose flour 374g 1 cup
1 teaspoon salt(1/2 in flour ½ sprinkled) 6g 1/3 teaspoon (1/2 in flour ½ sprinkled)
3/4 teaspoon sugar 3.16g 0.25 teaspoon
1 teaspoon instant dry yeast 1g 1/4 and 1/8 teaspoon
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 40g 1 tablespoon
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 cup cold water 236g 1/3 cup
1. Combine flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, sugar, and yeast in the bowl of an electric mixer, and slowly add 1 cup cold water. Mix on low speed until ingredients begin to combine, increase speed to medium-high, and continue to mix for about 10 minutes until the dough is smooth, elastic, and cleanly pulls away from the sides of the mixing bowl.
2. Place dough in an oiled bowl, and allow to rest for 2 to 4 hours until it has doubled in size. Split the dough into halves, and form each into a log. Place each log on a generously floured surface, and allow it to rest until the formed dough doubles in size again, at least 1 hour.
3. Put dough on a lightly floured baker’s peel. Dimple dough by pressing it down with your fingertips. Work the dough outward toward the edges of the peel until you reach your desired size and thickness, about 1/4 inch. [Or in our case, realize that I forgot to do this, and instead rolled it out!] Drizzle with remaining olive oil, rosemary and sprinkle with remaining salt.
4. Place a baking stone, sometimes known as a pizza stone, in the oven. Set oven to broil, about 520 (271C)degrees. Slide pizza onto baking stone with the baker’s peel. Bake until the bubbles range from golden to deep brown in color, 10 to 12 minutes. [Great trick if you don’t have a peel: Use the back of a baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal.]
Update: I’ve added so many clarifications in the comments, I want to point you to them from here, such as why you don’t have to have a pizza stone, why a KitchenAid is not a requirement and why the broil setting, when you’re not broiling. Happy baking!

Potato topping version
2 potatoes, thinly sliced (about 2 cups) [I used Yukon Golds, and I believe this is what Lahey uses as well]
1/2 onion, diced into 1/4- to 1/2-inch pieces
1 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3. While the dough rises for the second time, repare the potato topping. Slice potatoes very thin using a knife or a mandoline. Then soak them in several changes of ice water to remove excess starch and prevent discoloration. Drain slices in a colander, toss with 1/2 teaspoon salt, and set aside for 10 minutes. Drain any accumulated water. In a medium bowl, combine potatoes, onions, and 1 tablespoon olive oil, and set aside.
4. Preheat oven to 440 degrees(225C). Prepare two rimmed baking sheets with vegetable oil. Divide dough in half. Place each piece on its own baking sheet. Using the palms of your hands, flatten dough out to the edges of the pan. Evenly spread potatoes over the surface of the dough up to the very edge, or about 1 inch from the edge if you desire a crust on your pizza. Season with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil. Sprinkle with rosemary if using.

5. Bake potato pizza until it has shrunk away from the edges of a pan and the bottom is golden brown, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven, and allow to cool slightly; slice into pieces, and serve. Potato pizza is also delicious served at room temperature.

This was quite good. There was too much olive oil so in the end I had to throw away the excess olive oil that was on the top onto the sink. It was crunchy, but not salty enough, perhaps because I mixed the salt into the flour. I sprinkled some on top afterwards and it completed the flavor. This pizza had a nice fermented taste like the usual pre-fermented Italian doughs. I fermented the dough outside at room temperature for 4 hours , it was quite cold so it took a while for it to double. But the second rise was much faster. The texture was quite amazing. I put it in the oven at 260C. It was done in about 12 minutes, and came out really crunchy and a bit lightly browned on the top. The crust had a slight alcoholic taste. I used the same dough and placed potato slices on top. It was quite nice, but I put it at 226C for 20 minutes instead. Now the pizza was less crunchy on the top, still crunchy on the bottom, but the texture was still about the same, like very chewy, but not as hard to digest as the extra chewy ones that were fermented at low temperatures for a long time.


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