Ali’s Amazing Pizza

Ali's pizza

Ali started making pizza from scratch and has now perfected his pizza dough and sauce recipes. Today he is making pizza at our house. Thanks, Ali for sharing this recipe and for making supper tonight!


2 tsp yeast
3/4 cup warm water
1 tsp sugar
1 heaping tsp flour

Mix in a glass container, cover with a towel and let sit someplace warm. After 20 minutes or so, check to make sure it’s all bubbly. If it isn’t the yeast may be dead.

Pour mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer with a dough hook. Add 1/4 more warm water to the container and swish it around to get all the yeast starter out.

3 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 more cup warm water

Add the flour, salt and warm water and start the mixer. Ali says to watch the dough, and if it’s really sticky, to add up to 1/4 cup more flour. He lets the mixer knead it for a few minutes, until the dough is all gathered up on the dough hook and just a little is still stuck to the sides of the bowl. You want the dough to be nice and soft.  Ali doesn’t have a stand mixer but  said it’s pretty easy to mix it with a spoon.

Oil or butter a glass bowl or baking dish, dust it with flour and put the dough in. Cover with plastic wrap and keep in a warm place until it rises and expands.  This may take a few hours, depending on the temperature.

Meanwhile, start the sauce.

1 large onion, diced
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 Tbsp crushed garlic

Heat oil in a medium size stock pot, and add onions. Cook until onions are very soft – about 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook a couple of minutes more.

3 14-oz cans diced or crushed tomatoes, or about 5 cups diced fresh tomatoes
12 peppercorns, ground in a mortar (about 1/2 tsp.)
1/8 cup balsamic vinegar  (Can add another Tbsp or so to balance the acidity of the tomatoes.)
1/8 cup fish sauce (available at Asian store)
1/4 tsp each parsley, sage, rosemary
1/2 tsp each oregano and basil
1 tsp salt (to taste)
2 dry red peppers
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
2 bay leaves
sugar to taste (about 1 tsp)

Add all but the sugar to the onions and stir well. Simmer on low heat with the lid cracked for 3-4 hours, stirring occasionally. The house will smell amazing.  Add sugar at the very end to taste, and check seasonings.


1 lb. hot Italian sausage, cooked and excess grease drained.
1 red bell pepper, diced (Ali roasted it on the grill.)
mozzarella cheese

Once dough is risen, divide it in two. Grease and lightly flour a baking sheet. Spread the dough on it and roll it out. Crimp the edges to form a nice crust. Brush dough lightly with olive oil. Take roughly half of the tomato sauce and spread it out. Sprinkle half meat and whatever toppings you want over it. Then sprinkle the cheese on top. Bake at 450 or 500 for 10 minutes, or until the cheese just starts to brown. You can make the other pizza at the same time with the remaining dough, sauce and toppings. (You may have a little sauce leftover which is great on pasta later.)

Let rest a few minutes before you cut into and start devouring.  This was so good.

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