Regarding yeast doughs, there are a few primary differences that distinguish high altitude baking from its sea level counterpart. These include: the need for more water (due to the dry air), a shorter rise time, and less yeast (due to less atmospheric pressure). The pizza dough I most love to make is wet and use small amounts of yeast, so it lends itself perfectly to high altitudes with a minimal amount of adjustments. I’m a big believer in eating pizza at least once a week, so this recipe was one of my first high altitude adaptations.
This pizza dough is very hydrated because it uses the bread making method known as Tangzhong. Popular among Japanese and Chinese bread makers, the Tangzhong method results in an incredibly light and moist dough. The method is simple: whisk together 5 parts water with 1 part flour (by weight), then heat the mixture. It should thicken and become gelatinous. I like to add some of the extra water at this point to the still hot gelatinous mixture to speed the cooling process as well as thin the mixture which helps it better incorporate into the flour mixture. Let it cool briefly (so as not to kill the yeast), then add it to the remaining ingredients. Read more.