(crust adapted from Bobby Flay)
3 1/2 - 4 c. bread flour, plus more for rolling
(Bread flour will yield a crisper crust. All-purpose flour will yield a chewier crust.)
1 t. sugar
1 envelope instant dry yeast
2 t. kosher salt
1 1/2 c. water, 110 degrees F.
2 T. plus 2 t. olive oil, divided
good quality jarred spaghetti sauce or canned chopped tomatoes
dried Italian herbs, to taste
12 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese
grated Parmesan cheese, to taste
optional: pepperoni or turkey pepperoni, sliced black olives, fresh basil
Combine flour, sugar, yeast, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer.
With mixer running, add water and 2 T. oil.
Mix on high until the dough forms a ball.
If the dough is sticky, add additional flour, 1 T. at a time, until it comes together.
If the dough is too dry, add additional water, 1 T. at a time.
Scrape the dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead into a smooth, firm ball.
Grease a large bowl with the remaining 2 t. olive oil, add the dough, cover with plastic wrap, and put it in a warm area to let it double in size, about 1 hour.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 2 equal pieces. Cover each with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap and let them rest for 10 minutes.
Roll each piece into a 14-inch circle.
Preheat oven to 475 F.
Place each piece on cooking surface of choice, crimping the edges.
(A pizza stone adds a little crisp, cast-iron gives a little char, and metal pizza pans provide a nicely crimped crust.)
Spread evenly with sauce and sprinkle with dried herbs, if desired.
Sprinkle with cheese, and add optional toppings.
Bake for approximately 20 minutes.