This blog has come a long way in one year. I started with crappy iPhone photos (because that's all I had the ability to take), super simple recipes and a desire the bake, bake, bake. Since then, I've tackled many of my baking fears (including the great Macaroon Massacre) and completed a Half Marathon. I had a couple of break downs and a couple of triumphs. I've even started to develop my own recipes which is something I NEVER thought I'd do!
So, for Blog Year #2, I wanted to kick it off with a BANG, and more specifically, a GIVEAWAY!!!! Now, last month I was lucky enough to win a Hamilton Beach Pizza Maker. I never, ever win ANYTHING, so I was pretty pumped to recieve it. Hubby and I are also Pizza Addicts, so this was truly the perfect prize for us!
Literally, the day we received it, we knew we were going to be making some 'zza. I used my favourite Pizza Dough Recipe (see below) and I was really pleased with the results. This pizza maker make the crust really nice and crunchy, without making it too crispy. It rotates the entire cooking time so everything is cooked evenly.
Now, it isn't necessarily any faster than making it in the oven, but it sure uses less power & won't heat up your kitchen in the summer time like an oven does. Plus? There are a TON of different things you can make with it (helloooooo Quesadillas!)
This got me thinking...I bet one of my readers would like this pizza maker A LOT! Guess what? The lovely folks at Hamilton Beach are letting me GIVE ONE AWAY to one you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Super Easy Pizza with the Hamilton Beach Pizza Maker
dough from my Super Easy Bread Dough Post
For the Dough
1 cup warm water
1 pack of dry, active, yeast
1 tbsp white sugar
2 tbsp olive oil
2 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour
1 tsp salt
For the toppings:
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can of Pizza Sauce (I use Unico)
2-3 cups shredded cheese
any additional toppings of your choice like pepperoni, mushroom, bacon, olives, etc.
First, we proof the yeast. Add the cup of warm water (think warm bath water) to a wide, shallow bowl. Sprinkle the yeast over top of the water. Next, sprinkle the sugar evenly over top of the yeast, followed up the oil. This pushes the yeast down to the bottom of the bowl. Let rest for 5 minutes or until it is nice and foamy.
While your yeast is proofing, add the flour and salt to a stand mixer that has the dough hook attachment on. Once yeast is ready, add to the flour and salt and turn on the mixer to "stir" You will see the dough start to form. Once dough is formed, allow to knead at this speed for about 6 minutes. If the dough is too dry at this point, add a touch of water. If it seems to moist, add a touch of flour. You want the dough to be moist, but not slimy.
After mixing is done, lift dough and spray the inside of the bowl with a little bit of cooking spray. Then, cover the bowl with cling wrap and set aside for 10-12 minutes. The dough won't double in size, you just want it to raise slightly.
While the dough is rising, it's time to prepare your pizza toppings! My favourite of all time is bacon and mushroom, so I do up some bacon, chop up some mushrooms, mince my garlic, shred my cheese, etc.
Now, this recipe makes enough for two pizza's, but the Pizza maker only makes one at a time, so I use half the dough in the maker and half in the oven. If you are doing this as well, preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Otherwise, you can wrap up the dough and store in the freezer for up to a month.
After your dough has had time to rise, take it out of the bowl and separate in half. Spray the tray of the Pizza Maker with a little bit of cooking spray and place dough on top. Using a rolling pin (or in my case a Freddy Krueger Pint Glass) roll the dough out to fit the shape of the pan. You could do this on your counter if you prefer, but I like to do it right in the pan. Flip dough, and continue to roll until it fits the pan.
Add your toppings! First, lay out half of the minced garlic on the dough. Cover with sauce, whatever toppings (again, in my case, bacon and mushroom) and then cover with half the cheese. Place in your pizza maker, set at 5 and turn timer on for 25 minutes.
Do the same with the remaining dough (if you are making 2 pizzas) on a pizza pan and put in the oven for 20 minutes or so.
When the time is up, the Pizza Maker will automatically stop! I find at this point, it wasn't quite ready, so I turned the heat down to 4 and put on for another 5-7 minutes. Just keep watching it (again, same with the oven pizza)
When the crust is done to your liking, unplug the machine and transfer pizza to a cutting board. BE CAREFUL, it is HOT HOT HOT!
Serve right away with your favourite dipping sauce (mine is a lil Cesar Dressing & Franks Hot). Keep leftover in the fridge in an air tight container for up to 3 days.
SO GOOD!!!! I just loooooooooooove the crust this Pizza Maker makes! I'm drooling thinking about it now!
SO! You may be asking...How do you get your hands on one of these bad boys? All you have to do is follow the prompts on the Rafflecopter Below:a Rafflecopter giveaway
[Giveaway open to Canadian Residents Only. Giveaway runs from April 2, 2014 until April 16, 2014. I chose to do this review on my own without being asked by Hamilton Beach. These are my honest opinions.]