Pizza with shallots and bresaola (the perfect pizza meat?)

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***DOUGH RECIPE, MAKES FOUR PIZZAS THIS SIZE***

1 3/4 cups (415 mL) plain water
1/4 cup (mL) warm water
4 cups (480g) bread flour (plus at least one more cup for kneading)
1-2 tablespoons (20-40g) malted barley syrup (can buy at Whole Foods [not and ad] but honey or table sugar would work instead)
1 tablespoon (15g) salt (I use Morton kosher)
1 packet (7g) dry yeast
olive oil

Combine the flour and the plain water in a big bowl and stir/knead just until the flour is wet. Punch a large hole in the center, cover the bowl and let autolyse (just sit there) for at least 20 minutes, but an hour is better.

Put in the barley syrup (or other sugar), being sure to get a little into the hole you dug earlier. Pour the warm water into the hole, stir in the yeast and let the yeast bloom for a few minutes until foamy, just to wake them up and make sure they’re still alive.

Put in the salt and big glug of olive oil (I don’t know, maybe 1/4 cup), and sprinkle everything generously with more flour before you get in with your hand and start kneading. Knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, adding just enough flour as you go to keep though dough from sticking to everything – I used about 5 cups (600g) total flour and it only took about 5 minutes of kneading after the autolyse phase.

For a particularly chewy and puffy dough, cover and let rise until doubled. (You can skip that part if you want and move into the next part.) Punch down the dough and divide it into four equal balls, again adding only as much flour as you need to keep it workable. The balls do not have to be smoothly shaped.

Place each dough ball in its own well-oiled container, cover and either let rise on the counter for a couple hours or transfer them to the refrigerator and let rise overnight or up to a week. (I think you get better flavor with the cold rise.)

You can freeze any unused dough after it has fully risen.

***THE REST OF THE RECIPE, TOPS ONE PIZZA)

1/4 cup crushed or ground canned tomatoes (I like Pastene Kitchen Ready [not an ad] ground tomatoes for pizza sauce)
flavorings for the pizza sauce (I used a little dry oregano and basil and chili flakes, garlic powder, black pepper, a pinch of sugar and a little glug of olive oil)
1 oz (30g) of thinly sliced bresaola (could use prosciutto instead)
1 shallot
4 oz low-moisture mozzarella (my favorite is Galbani [not an ad] whole milk string cheese cut into rounds)
a few fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
gated parmesan
flour
cornmeal

Get a pizza stone or steel pre-heating on your oven’s maximum temperature, ideally convection. I heat my steel for. a full hour before I bake.

Stir the sauce flavorings into the crushed tomatoes. Peel and thinly slice the shallot. Grate the mozzarella and keep it cold right until it goes on the pizza.

Coat a pizza peel generously with equal parts cornmeal and flour. Stretch the dough (sticky doughs are easier to shape when cold) and lay it on the peel. Top with a thin layer of sauce and grated parmesan. Tear one a few ribbons of bresaola and lay on a few slices of shallot.

Top with half of the mozzarella, being sure to partially cover the bresaola. Tear on the remain bresaola and sprinkle on some more shallot (you’ll prob only need half of the shallot). Scatter on the rest of the mozzarella (leaving at least some of the bresaola uncovered), then put on a few more shallot slices and the parsley leaves.

Shake the pizza on the peel every now and then as you are building it, to make sure it doesn’t stick to the peel.

Slide the pizza onto the pre-heated steel or stone and bake until finished — mine took seven minutes. Remove directly to a cooling rack and let it cool to eating temperature before slicing. You can also shimmy the pizza on the cooling rack to let any excess flour and cornmeal fall away.

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