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  • Signe Langford

Dough Ball Deliverance

I love a ball of pizza dough; homemade or store-bought. Though, in all honesty, I rarely make my own. For around two bucks I can get a perfectly decent version from the bakery section of the grocery store, and it does the trick. It’s a damn good habit to get into. One ball of dough will keep in the fridge for several days if stored properly, and can be the start of many fast, easy, tasty meals. And it beats calling for take-out or popping one of those frozen pizzas in the oven (too much sugar in the sauce).

Grilled pizza dough dolloped with pesto, served with feta, tzatziki, roasted red pepper, olives and anchovies. I ate this about three times a week last summer.

From a ball of store-bought pizza dough I’ve made:

Pizza cones - sweet and savoury, flatbreads – fried, baked and grilled, grilled pizza, focaccia, stromboli, pizza pockets, cinnamon rolls.... I may even be forgetting something!

As a single person, a ball of dough will feed me for days. I can pull off a small lump of dough for dinner night after night and the flavour of the dough just keeps developing in the fridge. But you have to store it right.

When I get it home I take it out of the bag and drop it into and olive oiled bowl. Then I oil the top of the dough too. I cover the bowl with either a well-fitting plate or I press the bag back over the top of the oiled dough ball, tucking it in all around the dough.

Pop it into the fridge and you’re good to go for up to a week. The dough will collapse a bit, but when you want to use some, cut off a piece the size you need, and leave it out to warm up a bit, which activates the yeast, causing it to rise a get fluffy again.

A super-heated slab of soapstone is the perfect surface for a blisteringly good pizza, foccacia, or flatbread. (click on an image to make it full size.) A pizza stone or cast iron pan works just as well.

Pizza dough is great for emergency cinnamon rolls! These are stuffed with chopped peaches and pecans.

One ball of pizza dough is enough for about 8 pizza pockets and one dough is enough for a family size stromboli. This one from my book is stuffed with backyard eggs, bacon, brie and pesto. Yum!

Grab a ball of pizza dough the next time you're at the store and try some of these ideas. And remember, you don't have to use it all at once! And if you have some great ways to use the versatile stuff, let me know!

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