Wednesday, March 13, 2013

No Added Salt Please!

When I began blogging, the first ever blog post was a sad looking 100% Whole Wheat Pizza Dough..:P..Sad because there are no pics. I just wanted to jot down the directions for myself, so I don't forget. Also, I was so anxious to START somewhere that as soon as I finished writing it up I kicked it out the door without pics. Poor guy..still hanging around with no views. So, I decided to do a new post on the Whole Wheat Pizza definitely deserves the respect.

 The whole premise of me cooking at home and everything from scratch is the title of this post..No added Salt Please. Like everyone around, we ate out a lot when we first came to the US, back in 2005. We also didn't have a choice, cos we were students with very less time to cook and clean. Obviously with no work outs and always studying late, we packed on a lot weight with time. Fast forward, Vaibhav & I got married here in 2009. Our parents visited us to get us married off. That's when the cycle of eating out completely broke. Mom stayed with us for a good 3 months during which we hardly ate out. The result..I dropped 4 dress sizes without working out a single day. I had no restrictions on food whatsoever, including desserts...still a consistent weight loss. I wish Mom had visited 3 months before we got married...I would have been slimmer on my wedding day..sheeesh!

Jokes apart it truly put a perspective in what I ate and how I managed my health. Two things I noticed
A) The portion sizes seemed huge to me and B) Any dish that I ate out seemed way too salty to me. The same food that I loved, gobbled up and cleaned my plate with no problems, seemed absolutely huge and salty now. Since then, I always find myself saying, "No added Salt Please"..of course apart from that I always have leftovers now. That's how my quest to cook everything at home began. I am scared of packing up so many calories and so much salt and fat in just one meal, that we almost everyday end up cooking at home..and Love it!!!
Sorry for the messy dish in the background..The pic was taken at night time and this angle was the best for light!
You can read my I don't eat Pizza story in my original post. Here, I am only going to reiterate, that this pizza dough is very light and delicious. If you are heavy on eating the white flour pizza then obviously, this will take time to grow on you. However, if you are health conscious and want to make healthy replacements of usual goodies, then this is sure to impress you.

Ingredients (yields 1 Large Thin Pizza crust..with a little left over that I freeze in a ziploc bag)
Original Recipe from Stepahanie's post at
  • 2 1/2 cups Whole Wheat flour and more for dusting; all divided (Indian store bought atta works like a charm)
  • 1 packet Active Dry yeast
  • 3/4 th teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Warm Water (It should be warm just enough so you can easily touh the water, but warmer than room temperature. If you have a kitchen thermometer, the ideal temparature is between 100-110 degrees F)
  • 1 tablespoon EVOO
  • 2 teaspoons Sugar

In a (2 cup) measuring cup, combine water and 2 tsp sugar. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Happily Bubbling away!
In a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, combine 2 cups whole wheat flour and salt. Make a well in the center of the bowl and pour the yeast mixture and 1 tbsp EVOO.

Now begin Stirring at the Stir speed using the dough attachment, or use a rubber spatula if kneading by hand.
The dough should just come together, it will be very sticky at this point.

Continue kneading in the mixer or by hand while adding more flour in 1 tbsp at a time (from the remaining 1/2 cup flour). Try not to exceed the 1/2 cup limit, it is easy to get carried away, cos the dough is so sticky. This should take about 3-4 minutes or make sure to knead that long to work the gluten in the dough.
Add only as much is needed to pull the dough away from the sides of the bowl and is no longer sticky. At this point even I like to finish by hand. Lightly oil your hand with EVOO and knead for a couple of minutes with your hand.

Shape dough into a ball. Lightly grease the bowl, or a separate bowl with EVOO. Also lightly grease the dough bowl, place it in the greased bowl, cover it with a kitchen towel tightly tied around the bowl, or a greased plastic wrap.

Place it in a warm place to rise. I use the oven with the Oven light ON, always does the trick, especially in the cold months. Let it rise for about 45 minutes to an hour, until doubled in size.

Punch down the risen dough, shape into a ball and place on a lightly floured pizza pan (or stone, I don't have a stone).
Roll it out in a circle of desired thickness, I made a thin crust large pizza. Let it rest about 10 minutes.

Preheat oven to 500 degrees F. Add the toppings of your choice. Place the pizza in oven and bake for about 10-15 minutes, or until crust turns golden brown and toppings are baked enough.

Let pizza rest for 10 minutes before serving.

These were the longest 10 minutes...Vaibhav oggled at the pizza with a timer in his hand and kept looking at it every 10 seconds..Is it up yet?? No..Is it up yet?? Nooooo!!

Hope you try and enjoy this Whole Wheat Pizza Crust. Happy Kneading!!!

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