I took a BIG risk today. In my second level class we do yeast as an entire UNIT, so when we make our bbq chicken pizza the kids are well-versed in kneading and water temps.
These first level newbies, not so much. I just couldn’t use packaged crust though, I just couldn’t. This crust recipe isn’t quite as good as the cool-rise dough I make at home, but people, today we made homemade crust and a bbq chicken pizza in about an hour. That’s right. My kids impressed me and did GREAT with this.
The recipe calls for rapid rise yeast. You will see two types at the store usually, active dry and rapid rise. Active dry needs to soften in warm water before being used, whereas rapid rise gets mixed in with your dry ingredients. Same affect, and both contain live yeast organisms, just different techniques involved.
The rise time on this dough is 20 minutes (dough rises at least an hour usually). AND IT REALLY ROSE.
Next, I could have had them make regular sauce and cheese pizza but this is just so good, and I got to introduce them to cilantro.
When I make this at home I use smoked Gouda or smoked mozzarella, but I had to keep things PG here for the highschoolers.
1 envelope Rapid Rise Yeast
2 ¼ – 2 ½ c. flour
1 tsp. salt
1 c. water- heated to 120-130 degrees
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. oil
5 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast
5 oz. mozzarella cheese, grated (about 1 1/2 c.)
¼ c. red onion, slivered
¾ c. barbecue sauce, divided
¼ c. tomato sauce
¼ c. cilantro
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2. Whisk flour, yeast, and salt in a large bowl.
3. Microwave water for 20 seconds and check temperature. Add olive oil to water. If you don’t have a thermometer here, 20 seconds in the micro should be about right.
4. Pour liquid mixture over flour mixture and stir with wooden spoon until a ball forms. If more flour needs to be added until ball forms, add in two tablespoon amounts. Dough will leave the sides of the bowl and come together.
5. Place dough on a lightly floured surface. Dust hands with flour and knead dough. Add flour as needed. Knead at least 5 minutes. Dough is done when it is, elastic, and forms a smooth ball. Knead: push away from you, turn dough a quarter turn, and fold in half. Repeat.
6. Place dough on floured counter, cover with clean dry kitchen towel, and let rest for 20 minutes.
7. Meanwhile, heat oil in nonstick skillet at medium heat till shimmering. Salt and pepper chicken breast and place in pan. Flip when browned. Slice chicken to make sure it is cooked through. You could also microwave chicken. Or simmer it. Just get it cooked somehow.
8. Shred chicken and coat in ¼ c. barbecue sauce. Set aside. Shred with two forks. Hold steady with one fork and with other fork turned over, pull chicken towards you.
9. In small bowl, mix remaining barbecue sauce and tomato sauce. Grate cheese. Using only bbq sauce as the “sauce” was too tangy for me; cutting it with regular sauce gave it a much better flavor.
10. Press dough into a round and finish stretching it by rolling with the rolling pin. Transfer to parchment paper.
Look! It rose!
FYI: This dough is VERY easy to work with. Add flour if sticky but I found it to be forgiving and easily stretched.
11. Spread sauce mixture (as much as you like), leaving a 1 inch border. Intermittently spread cheese, chicken, and onion over pizza, ending with cheese layer.
12. Using cutting board, place dough on pizza stone. Bake for approximately 13 minutes on center rack, or until cheese is bubbly.
13. Spread chopped cilantro on pizza when you remove it from the oven.
Cilantro really brightens up the flavor of this. Don’t skip it.
Get a pizza stone. If you don’t have one and want to make this at now, put a baking sheet or jelly roll pan upside down in the oven when you preheat it, then slide your pizza onto that using the parchment paper the same way you would if it were a pizza stone.
Parchment- yes. Waxed paper-no. Waxed paper can only hold up in heats 350 degrees and under. Parchment can take heat up to 500 degrees.