August 2, 2021 - 7:13pm
Freezing pizza dough
I am new both here and the wonderful world of baking. I am currently experimenting with pizza dough which I am giving a 48 hour levitation period in the fridge. This I read is great to allow the gluten to form. (I think I have my terminology correct - only started two weeks ago haha)
Anyway, I would now like to freeze my dough for future use. My question is at what point do I freeze it?
1) On day one after making the dough then go through the 48 hour levitation process once defrosted or
2) After the 48 hour levitation process so that it is ready to bake one defrosted?
I haven't done it myself, but from what I have seen it's best to freeze when it's fully proofed and ready to stretch. Freeze individual balls on a tray, then once frozen they can be moved to a bag so the tray doesn't take up the whole fridge. Then I would thaw them out in the fridge overnight.
You are in luck! The topic of freezing pizza dough has been discussed frequently.
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Also try: freezing pizza dough
Both ways are possible.
Store bought frozen pizza dough is sold in balls that are freshly mixed, shaped into balls and immediately frozen. It ferments as it is slowly comes first to the refrigerated state overnight inside fridge and later at room temp.
You can also fully ferment it, shape into disks and freeze them individually and stack to store inside Ziploc bag. Then take each out individually as you need them, let them soften, stuff and bake. Just remember that anything that you pan to freeze would need two times more yeast than normal. So, if you normally use 1 tsp of yeast per pound of flour in your pizza dough, then use 2 tsp if you plan to freeze that dough. Not all yeast would survive freezing.
The third way is probably the best one for home use. Fully ferment your dough, shape and prebake it, without browning it too much and without filling it with sauces and cheeses. Freeze. When needed take as many pre-baked (partially baked) pale disks and fill them to taste and bake to complete your pizzas.
We make our pizzas by using the 3rd method, what we call pizza shells. I do add a little potato flour to the dough that seem to help keep the moist in the final bake. I make the disks and pre bake or par bake them on a pizza screen or mesh. I usually make 6 at a time and then my wife does the final putting the pizza together and baking on a pizza stone. The pizza screens are not hard to find - most restaurant supply houses or pizza supply houses have them at about $ 3 each. This is also what our son and family in Canada do for their pizza. Our son-in-law makes dough balls and freezes those - he makes the best pizza of the 3 of us but then he has a wood fired oven to cook them in. We all love pizza including the 4 grandchildren and we all like our own pizza better than most commercial pizza.
When I make pizza dough I always make a few more that I freeze, partly because I like pizza, and partly my Bosch kneader does not work well with below 500g flour.
You freeze the pizza balls before shaping. Not much to it, really.
Bake-with-Jack has a short video about it.