Lahey Pizza Dough | Tipo 00 Flour | Fig Jam, Caramelized Onion, Blue Cheese Pizza
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
A series of fortuitous events in the past few months have led to a number of wonderful discoveries: an ingredient — Tipo 00 flour; a technique — minimal handling of dough; and a reward — the best pizza I have ever made at home.
Let’s start from the beginning. Five trips in three weeks to 2Amys Pizzeria in NW Washington DC (over an hour drive from my house) convinced me it was finally time to get my hands on some Tipo 00 flour, a soft-grain flour requisite in the production of D.O.C. Neapolitan pizza, an ingredient I’ve been thinking about for five years now.
I hate to admit it and in retrospect it pains me, but a $7.25 shipping charge has been the sole barrier between me and Tipo 00 flour for about a year now. Am I wrong to expect everything to ship for free and arrive the next day? (I know, so bratty! Sorry.) Anyway, to soften the blow, I ordered 10 bags, which made the total price per bag $4.22, a nominal fee especially when each bag yields six pizzas.
About the time that my flour arrived, I received a text message from a friend who had been experimenting with the Jim Lahey pizza dough. The message read: “Help!” While she had been having great success flavor-wise with the Lahey recipe, her pies were less than picturesque. (Click on the link…it will make you chuckle. I love you, Bates.)
I had to come to my friend’s rescue. She had requested video guidance, which I was certain was out there and which I was determined to find for her. My quest for her, however, may have proven to help me equally as well. A video and a note published on Serious Eats made me realize that for all these years that I have been making homemade pizza, I have been majorly overhandling my dough, at least for the sort of pizza I strive to make.
The note from Lahey read as follows:
“As soon as I began really paying attention to how I shaped my pizza rounds by taking care to use a gentle hand, I noticed a difference in the finished product. The air pockets pervading the unbaked round really affect the texture of the baked pizza.”
Having just spent $42 on 10 bags of flour, I sort of wished Lahey felt more strongly about the type of flour he used, but ultimately I agree that the handling of the dough is more important than the type of flour used. As soon as I began really paying attention to how I shaped my pizza rounds — gently/minimally — I noticed a difference in the finished product. The air pockets pervading the unbaked round (video/photo below) really affect the flavor and texture of the baked pizza.
I’ve made the Lahey dough many times now, and it is always delicious, regardless if I use bread flour or Tipo 00 flour. I do feel strongly, however, that the Tipo 00 flour produces a superior product, especially in texture. The unbaked dough is softer, more delicate and easier to shape — it doesn’t resist the shaping as much as the dough made with bread flour. The crust of the baked pizza, too, is a bit more tender, and the outer edge has a bit more chew.
Again, regardless of the flour, with the Lahey method, I’ve finally been able to achieve that quintessensial Neopolitan ballooned and blistered outer edge. I think I’m ready for my wood-burning oven. Santa, I hope you’re reading.
Finally, Readers, as you might imagine, I have a few extra bags of Tipo 00 flour on hand. Since you won’t be able to find this product without paying for shipping, I’d love to share my remaining bags with a few of you. Leave a comment if you’re interested. Just tell me you’re favorite thing to eat or you’re most valued kitchen tool (one of mine is commercial-grade plastic wrap, see below) or what’s next on your to-make list. Thanks so much for reading.
2Amys Pizzeria serves D.O.C. Neapolitan pizza, which means they follow the strict requirements outlined by the Italian government for producing authentic Neapolitan pizza. The guidelines cover all the bases: the oven (wood-burning); the shaping (by hand); the final size (no larger than 11 inches); the ingredients (dough must be made with tipo 00 flour, fresh yeast, water and salt and the toppings extend to Italian plum tomatoes, mozzarella di bufala, extra-virgin olive oil, fresh basil and dried oregano).
If you’re looking for more information on Tipo 00 flour, this link on Forno Bravo is helpful.
Shots from our lunch at 2Amys a few weeks ago:
Green tomato, ramp, Grana & egg pizza:
The margherita pizza at 2Amys is just about the ideal — pizza, food, meal, everything. It is so unbelievably delicious.
7 Secrets to Mastering Pizza at Home
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Fig Jam, Caramelized Onion & Blue Cheese Pizza
- Total Time: 18 hours 5 minutes
- Yield: Dough Yields 6 Rounds
For the dough:
- 7 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (1000 grams) plus more for shaping dough
- 4 teaspoons fine sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast
For this pizza you’ll need:
- caramelized onions
- fig jam, thinned out with a little bit of water for easy spreading
- blue cheese, any type you like
- Parmigiano Reggiano, grated
- 1 round pizza dough
- Whisk flour, salt, and yeast in a medium bowl. While stirring with a wooden spoon, gradually add 3 cups water; stir until well incorporated. Mix dough gently with your hands to bring it together and form into a rough ball. Transfer to a large clean bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let dough rise at room temperature (about 72°) in a draft-free area until surface is covered with tiny bubbles and dough has more than doubled in size, about 18 hours (time will vary depending on the temperature in the room).
- Transfer dough to a floured work surface. Gently shape into a rough rectangle. Divide into 6 equal portions. Working with 1 portion at a time, gather 4 corners to center to create 4 folds. Turn seam side down and mold gently into a ball. Dust dough with flour; set aside on work surface or a floured baking sheet. Repeat with remaining portions.
- If you are going to make a pizza immediately, let dough rest on a floured work surface, covered with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel, until soft and pliable, about 1 hour. Otherwise, transfer each dough ball to a quart (or other) container and store in the fridge for up to 3 days. Let dough rest at room temperature on a lightly floured work surface, covered with plastic wrap, for about an hour or two before shaping/baking.
- To Make the Pizzas: During the last hour of dough’s resting, preheat oven to its hottest setting, 500°–550°. If you have a Baking Steel, stick that in the top third of the oven.
- Working with 1 dough ball at a time, dust dough with flour and place on a floured work surface. Gently shape dough into a 10″–12″ disk handling it as minimally as possible. Arrange dough disk on a parchment-lined pizza peel (if using a Baking Steel) or a baking sheet; top minimally with desired toppings: to make this pizza, first spoon some of the thinned out fig jam over top, then top with caramelized onions, the blue cheese, and finally the Parmigiano Reggiano. Bake pizza until bottom of crust is crisp and top is blistered, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a work surface to slice. Repeat with remaining pizzas.
- Prep Time: 18 hours
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Category: Pizza
- Method: Oven
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: pizza, caramelized, onion, fig, jam, Jim, Lahey, tipo 00, flour
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
174 Comments on “Lahey Pizza Dough | Tipo 00 Flour | Fig Jam, Caramelized Onion, Blue Cheese Pizza”
Greetings! Love your website, and the pizza pictures make me hungry for that best of foods!
4 years ago, I decided that I was going to build myself a wood-fired pizza oven in my backyard. After some research on the good ‘ole Net, I made my plans and started buying the materials. After about a month of digging, concrete pouring and brick stacking, my oven waws ready…..and what fun I’ve had with it since : )
My preference has been for “00”, and I’ve always had superior results, as well as rave reviews by my pizza-loving family and neighbors.
Double Oh is the way to go!!
So awesome, Steve!! I am so envious of your oven. Can you send any links regarding the research you did on the net? I would love love love to build an oven.
Hello Alexandra – if you’re still interested in building a pizza oven, Karen Bertlesen has a great tutorial on her site http://www.theartofdoingstuff.com. Just put “Pizza Oven” into the search button at the top and you’ll get an easy-to-follow four-part tutorial that can be accomplished by anybody who has a little skill and a lot of determination.
Oh my goodness, Norma, thank you so much! I am so intrigued by the layer of glass bottles. Can’t wait to give the whole tutorial a read. Thanks SO much for sending!!
Feeling very fortunate. I can purchase the Tipo 00 flour at several local stores. I’ve used this flour for making pizza dough and pasta. The best.
It truly is the best, right?
I put the dough round directly onto the grate of our gas grill, well oiled grate and temp around 450. Close lid for a couple of minutes just to set the dough and then flip and pull out using a peel. THE BOTTOM SIDE IS NOW THE TOP SIDE. Load on the toppings and replace onto the hot grate , close lid until desired finish is achieved.
This is how I always make my pizza crust on the grill! As far as I’m concerned, it’s the best way!
Can I use instant yeast instead? I have some nice Red Star in my freezer… THANKS!
THANKS! Just a 1:1 swap?
I’ve been making Kenji’s New York pizza dough (with a few modifications) for years, and while it is a very good recipe, this one has it beat! The flavor of the dough is incomparable, and only gets better with a few days’ rest in the fridge. I only had instant yeast on hand, so I used a rounded ½ tsp. We also keep our house at about 75º, so our dough was ready in about 8 hours. My only complaint was that the dough didn’t blister/brown at all in the oven (that’s my oven’s fault– someday we will have an outdoor pizza oven!) Thanks for the great recipe.
So happy to hear this, Sarah!! I love this one, too. I am without an oven at the moment, and I am missing my Baking Steel … do you have one? I preheat my Steel at 550 for at least an hour, and that usually does the trick with the blistering.
So happy you liked this one.Happy holidays!!
When using 00 flour the water must be reduced to 60% saturation so Lahey’s no knead dough recipe which calls for 500 gr ap or bread flour and 350 water has to be adjusted to 300 gr water. Has that adjustment been made in this recipe if substituting 00 flour
I’ve never made any adjustment to the water when using 00 flour, and I’ve never had an issue.
Finally, the answer I’ve been seeking. I’ve been making the pizza dough from Alexandra’s book (and loving it), but recently made it with tipo 00 flour only to end up with an impossibly wet dough and have not been able to find an explanation. The peasant pizza in Bread Toast Crumbs is a 2:1 flour water ratio. The recipe on the tipo 00 flour bag calls for 4 cups of flour to 1.25 cups of water. Am I correct that to calculate the saturation I divide water into flour?
Hi Kim! Isn’t it interesting how different flours affect the consistency of the dough? I love Tipo 00 flour — when the ratio is right, the dough feels sooooo nice. Question: are you using a scale to measure the flour? Wen you calculate the hydration of a dough, you do divide the weight of the water by the weight of the flour (for a rough calculation), so if a dough has 300 g water and 400 g flour, the hydration is 75%. Using weights is most accurate. If you want to make Tipo 00 flour work well for the peasant pizza in BTC, I would use 1.5 cups of flour, and see how that works out. Let me know if there is anything else!
Going to make this!! Can you freeze dough in the containers after dividing them up?
Ok thanks. Do I have to proof yeast first before adding it to the flour and salt?
Not for this long, overnight rise. If you are using active-dry recipe for a bread recipe with a shorter rise, you will want to proof it first.
Gotcha. Thank you!
I am looking forward to trying this. I think my favorite kitchen tool, the one that makes my life easier and the biggest difference in baking, is my kitchen scale.
Absolutely! I couldn’t agree more.
My favorite thing to eat is fried chicken. I’m planning to make a chocolate cake next. I’ve been using lahey’s dough recipe for a while (for his zucchini pizza!) but have never tried with 00 flour!
00 flour is a real treat 😍😍😍 I’m excited for you!
Hi, thank you for your awesome recipe!! I followed your ‘Homemade Pizza Dough’ recipe yesterday and the result was fabulous!! I noticed that in some of your pizza recipes you let the dough rise for 1.5 hours (like in your ‘Homemade Pizza Dough Recipe’) and in some for 18 hours, like in this recipe. What is the reason for this difference in time? Is it because of the type of dough you are using? When I use regular all-purpose flour, can I let that sit for 18 hours? Is that going to give a better taste?
Also, if using active dry yeast instead of instant yeast, is the amount i’ll need going to be the same?
Hi Sara! Wonderful to hear this.
OK, so the idea is that the less yeast you use, the more time you need to let it rise. So for my homemade pizza dough recipe, which calls for a teaspoon of instant yeast (which is stronger than active dry), it will be ready to shape in 1.5 to 2 hours.
Here, the recipe calls for 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast, which typically needs to be activated before use, and therefore needs a much longer amount of time for the rise to occur. This recipe also has about 2x as much flour.
A long slow rise is also touted for creating beautiful air pockets throughout the dough, but I find I can actually get nearly the same amount of air pockets with a short rise.
So to answer your other questions:
When I use regular all-purpose flour, can I let that sit for 18 hours? Is that going to give a better taste? Yes, you can! But I would say, for every 1000 g flour, use about 1/2 teaspoon active dry or instant yeast (maybe a scant 1/2 teaspoon if using instant yeast). Some people do believe a longer, slower rise does give more flavor, and I do think there is something to this.
Hope that makes sense! Let me know if there is anything else.
I do love your advice re: it’s the handling not the flour type – for pizza dough. I’ve tried both types and combinations thereof with no remarkable difference. Now I know why..
BTW, 00 flour in my tarallini baking experience? It makes a huge difference. They’re lighter with 00. I love making and eating tarallini. 🙂
Amazing! I love tarallini. One of my Italian friends is always dropping off bags for me, because she knows I love them so.
Getting ready to delve deeper into my pizza crust journey.
With my schedule I want to make a double or triple batch and freeze. I think take it out of freezer night before and put in fridge. Then move to room temp 1-2 hours before shaping???
My question is….do I shape it into a ball (pre-shape I guess it would be) about a hour before stretching/shaping or can I form crust right out of container it was froze in?
Should it be noticeably risen/puffy before forming crust?
…sorry that’s two questions 😊
Thanks so much I appreciate it!
I like to take the frozen dough out of the freezer in the morning and let it sit at room temperature all day to thaw — this allows me to skip the fridge time, but you can do the fridge method as well.
Ideally, your dough is already a ball when you freeze it. So, once the dough is thawed, you can transfer it to a floured board — I would do this 45 – 60 minutes prior to baking. Then, when you are ready to bake, stretch it into a round.
Hope this helps!
Have you ever used instant yeast for this instead of active dry? I’d like to if possible. Thanks.
Yes! Go for it. That’s what I use all the time now for this recipe.
hello Ali. The pizza looks so delicious! Making it today. You mentioned having extra Tippo 00 flour. If stlll available, please let me know details. Thank you
Hi Glo! I should edit that … I’ll have to re-read the post. This post is very old at this point, so I don’t have any more 00 flour. But if you want to order some, try this: Tipo 00 Flour
I am a pizza freak (and bread freak too). My European Grandfather, who lived with us, always said a meal isn’t a meal without bread – and I agree. I make your Peasant Bread at least three times a week. but I digress…I have never been able to satisfy my husband with what he thinks is a good crust pizza. I used to roll my pizza out with a rolling pin never realizing what I was doing to the dough. After 8 years of making pizza and trying different combos of flour I now have the secret: minimal handling of the dough. Wow, what a pizza game changer! My husband now loves my pizza, I love my pizza and most of all, I love you for bringing this well kept secret to your followers. Thank you Alexandra!!! (And please thank your Mother for the bread recipe)
I’m so happy to hear this, Barbara 🙂 🙂 🙂 The minimal handling of the dough was game-changing for me as well. Thanks so much for writing. I will absolutely thank my mother for you… she loves hearing these things 💕💕💕
In the recipe you have the pizza on parchment paper if using a pizza steel. Do you put the parchment paper directly on the steel when cooking? That won’t be too hot for the parchment paper?
Yes, I do! Go for it! It’s not too hot. Never use parchment under the broiler, but it’s fine in the oven — I use it at 550ºF without trouble.
This pizza dough is a fail safe – follow the recipe and the dough will always be soft, a little chewy with air holes, and very tasty with any topping combination
Wonderful to hear this, Geri 🙂 🙂 🙂 Thanks so much for writing.
Is it safe to leave the dough for longer than 18 hours??? Will it be detrimental to the end result??
How much longer are you thinking? A few more hours should be just fine.
I haven’t read through all the comments to find our if you already answered my questions I have. First question is can I cut down this recipe (how much less Tipo 00, water, active yeast) to make 2 pizzas? Second question is the technique the same as your homemade pizza video as far as handling or do you have a video of you using the Tipo 00 for making pizza dough?
Hi Eden! If you want to make two pizzas, I would make a half recipe of this recipe: Simple, 4-Ingredient Homemade Pizza Dough
If you are planning on using 00 flour, definitely use 400 grams water or possibly less. Tipo 00 flour does not absorb as much water, so your dough potentially will be very wet if you use the higher amount of water suggested.
In terms of handling, the process is the same regardless of which flour you use.
Forgot my 3rd question: Pizza stone vs Pizza steel?
I can’t recommend a Baking Steel enough!
This looks amazing! I plan to try it out for a group this week. I wondering if you think it wold be possible to split the dough into more than 6 balls to create more pizzas?
Definitely! They’ll just be smaller pizzas. If you’re OK with that, go for it 🙂