1 cup less 1 1/2 tbsp lukewarm water (105° F to 110° F), divided
1 pkg active dry yeast ( 1/4 oz or 2 1/2 tsp)
2 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour, divided
4 tsp vital wheat gluten
1 tsp sea salt
3 tbsp olive oil, divided
In a large bowl, mix together honey and 1/3 cup water. Sprinkle in yeast and allow to proof, undisturbed (do not stir or move bowl), for 10 minutes or until yeast is foamy. (NOTE: If yeast does not foam, it is dead and your dough will not rise. Discard and start again with fresh ingredients.)
While yeast is proofing, mix together 2 cups flour, wheat gluten and salt in another large bowl.
Once yeast is foamy, add remaining water and 2 tbsp oil to yeast mixture. Pour in flour mixture and gently fold in with a bowl scraper or spatula until just combined. Mixture will form a very wet ball. Coat the bottom of another large bowl with remaining oil (ensure that bowl is large enough so that, when doubled in size, the dough will not reach the top). Transfer dough to bowl, rolling ball a bit to coat with oil. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap and set aside at room temperature to rise for 1 hour. Dough will be very soft and sticky.
Lightly dust counter with about 1/4 cup flour. Transfer dough to floured surface and roll lightly in flour as needed. Gently knead dough, using remaining flour as needed, for about 1 minute. Form dough into a ball and place back into bowl. Cover bowl again tightly with plastic wrap and set aside at room temperature to rise for 30 minutes.
Transfer dough back to floured surface, adding more flour to prevent dough from sticking, if needed, and cut dough in half to form 2 balls. Lightly knead each for about 30 seconds and reform into balls. Dough is now ready to be formed into crust or wrapped for future use. To store, wrap each dough ball individually in plastic wrap. Dough can be kept refrigerated for 24 hours or frozen for up to 1 month.
There are so many things you can do with a good pizza crust. I have to admit that there is this amazing little Italian deli a few miles from my house that sells pizza dough, and I sometimes stop in on the way home and buy a bag or two to make dinner. But it is easy to make your own crust, too. The fun part of pizza making is getting creative with toppings, using whatever we have in the house. We have been putting hummus on our pizza crust for quite some time. On top of the hummus, you can put any greens you have. Sometimes I use watercress or baby spinach for the kids because they are milder, though I love to use fresh spring baby arugula. The sautéed mushrooms add a great texture and pop of flavor.
This quick and easy clean eating pizza uses pita bread for a traditionally thin and crispy crust. Vary the toppings to your taste preferences: add diced Roma or sun-dried tomatoes, chopped olives or even leftover cooked broccoli.