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Welcome to My Hungry Boys where I share what I love to cook for my husband and our four sons.   I've made a lot of food over the years and I've learned a lot in the process. 

Tangzhong Pan Pizza Dough

Tangzhong Pan Pizza Dough

This dough recipe is identical to the one found here, but with different quantities in order to fill a half sheet pan. 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.  Let it cool briefly (so as not to kill the yeast), then add it to the remaining ingredients. I like to add some of the extra water 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.

The type of flour makes a big difference when it comes to pizza dough.  A high protein flour gives the crust a chewier pull, so you should try to use a high protein flour (as high as you can find).  At most grocery stores, the highest protein option is a bread flour (12-13% protein) which works beautifully.  But an even better option than run-of-the-mill bread flour is King Arthur Hi-Gluten Flour (14% protein), which is available online.  The following recipe is designed for a high gluten flour, which will need a bit more water than other flours in order to properly hydrate.  If you are using regular bread flour, make the noted adjustments.

I prefer instant yeast, but I have also included an alternative pizza dough recipe (scroll down) for those of you who prefer using active dry yeast. See note here on instant yeast versus active dry yeast.

Tangzhong Pan Pizza Dough (Using Instant Yeast)

(Scroll down for recipe using Active Dry Yeast)

  • 3¼ cups Hi-Gluten or bread flour (14 ounces) - divided (see note for accurately measuring flour here)

  • 1 teaspoon instant yeast

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt (decrease if using table salt)

  • 1½ cups water - 12 ounces - divided (1¼ cups + 2 tablespoons water - 11 ounces - if using regular bread flour). More water may be necessary, especially in the drier winter months

Make the Tangzhong:  In a saucepan, whisk together 1.3 ounces flour (5 tablespoons) with 6.5 ounces water (¾ cup + 1 tablespoon) until smooth.  Heat and continue whisking until the mixture is thick, and gelatinous - I recommend heating until bubbling to assure the mixture reaches the necessary temperature, and switch from a whisk to a rubber spatula if necessary.  Stir continuously as you want a smooth mixture without lumps.   Remove from the heat, and add enough of the reserved water (about ⅓ cup) to cool the mixture sufficiently so as not to kill the yeast when added to the flour and yeast. 

Place remaining 12.7 ounces of flour into a large bowl with the instant yeast and salt.  Stir.  Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the cooled, diluted gelatinous mixture to the bowl.  Add ¼ cup water (or if using regular bread flour add only 1 tablespoon water) - cool is fine.  Stir all of the ingredients together, then let it sit for 1 minute as the flour absorbs the liquid.  After 1 minute, add more water as needed (this amount will vary based on humidity levels and the season, but you'll probably need 1 or 2 tablespoons).  You want a moist and craggy dough.  Cover with plastic wrap (no need to knead) and let rise until its size almost doubles (an increase in size of ~30%-40% is fine) (~2 hours).  (If your dough needs a boost, see tip on getting a faster rise).

Rather than knead the dough, stretch and roll it.  The wet dough benefits from the no-knead method.  Using a rubber spatula, lift part of the dough, stretch it, and then fold it back onto the ball of dough.  Rotate the bowl 90° and repeat 3 more times.  Lift the dough ball and stretch it under itself, pulling it into a ball shape.  If you do not plan on using the dough until the next day, place each ball into an un-greased bowl, then cover it with plastic wrap in a refrigerator.  (I prefer making the dough a day ahead because 1) a slow rise results in a more flavorful dough, and 2) working with cold dough is easier - you are less likely to tear a hole in the dough or stretch it too thin.)  The next day, proceed as below under forming and baking the dough.


Tangzhong Pan Pizza Dough (Using Active Dry Yeast)

  • 3¼ cups Hi-Gluten or bread flour (14 ounces) - divided (see note for accurately measuring flour here)

  • 1¼ teaspoon active dry yeast

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt (decrease if using table salt)

  • 1½ cups water - 12 ounces - divided (1¼ cups + 2 tablespoons water - 11 ounces - if using regular bread flour). More water may be necessary, especially in the drier winter months

Make the Tangzhong:  In a saucepan, whisk together 1.3 ounces flour (5 tablespoons) with 6.5 ounces water (¾ cup + 1 tablespoon) until smooth.  Heat and continue whisking until the mixture is thick and gelatinous - I recommend heating until bubbling to assure the mixture reaches the necessary temperature, and switch from a whisk to a rubber spatula if necessary.  Stir continuously as you want a smooth mixture without lumps.   Remove from the heat, and add ¼ cup of the reserved water (or if using regular bread flour add 1 tablespoon reserved water) to cool the mixture sufficiently so as not to kill the yeast when added to the flour and yeast. Whisk the mixture to blend completely.

In a small pan, heat ⅓ cup of the reserved water to ~100°F-110°F (do not exceed 110°F). Pour into a small container and stir in 1 teaspoon of the pre-measured flour (or 1 teaspoon sugar if you prefer). Sprinkle and stir in 1¼ teaspoons active dry yeast. Allow 5-10 minutes for it to get frothy.

Place remaining 12.7 ounces of flour (less the 1 teaspoon used) into a large bowl with the salt.  Stir.  Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the cooled, diluted gelatinous mixture to the bowl and the frothy yeast mixture.  Stir all of the ingredients together, then let it sit for 1 minute as the flour absorbs the liquid.  After 1 minute, add more water if needed (this amount will vary based on humidity levels and the season, but you may need 1-2 tablespoons).  You want a moist and craggy dough.  Cover with plastic wrap (no need to knead) and let rise until its size almost doubles (an increase in size of ~30%-40% is fine) (~2 hours).  (If your dough needs a boost, see tip on getting a faster rise).

Rather than knead the dough, stretch and roll it.  The wet dough benefits from the no-knead method.  Using a rubber spatula, lift part of the dough, stretch it, and then fold it back onto the ball of dough.  Rotate the bowl 90° and repeat 3 more times.  Lift the dough ball and stretch it under itself, pulling it into a ball shape.  If you do not plan on using the dough until the next day, place each ball into an un-greased bowl, then cover it with plastic wrap in a refrigerator.  (I prefer making the dough a day ahead because 1) a slow rise results in a more flavorful dough, and 2) working with cold dough is easier - you are less likely to tear a hole in the dough or stretch it too thin.)  The next day, proceed as below.

Forming and Baking the Dough:

Pour about 2 tablespoons of olive oil into a half sheet pan (17” x 11” pan with sides), spreading the oil so that it covers the bottom and the sides of the pan.  Lightly flour the ball of dough.  Press it into an oval disk on a lightly floured board, but make sure to retain the rim around the outer edge.  Press the center of the oval while slowly pulling the dough outward, in order to replicate a pan shape with a lip.  Lift and stretch the dough, letting gravity help form it into an oval.  If it fights back and shrinks when you lay it back on the board, let it rest for a few minutes, then stretch it out again.  Repeat this process until your dough is the desired size.  Don't use a rolling pin to roll out your dough because this flattens the edges and alters the beautiful shape.  Lay your dough in the oiled pan and then carefully flip the dough over so that both sides have a thin coating of oil.  Cover with plastic wrap and push the dough outward from the middle so that it fills up the pan.  You may need to let it rest for 5 minutes before pushing it outwards again, letting it rest and pushing it outwards again as often as necessary until the dough fills the pan. Let it rest so that it can rise one final time before baking (~1-2 hours for cold dough, ~45-75 minutes for room temperature dough).  When I want a very fluffy pizza dough I place the pan of dough in a very warm place (for me that’s the furnace room) for the last 30 minutes of rising time. Preheat oven to 500°F. 

Remove the plastic wrap from your rested pizza dough.  Top as desired.  Bake in a preheated 500°F oven for ~10-15 minutes.  I like to bake the pizza on the bottom rack as it gives the bottom a nice crust. I move the pan to a higher rack if the bottom crust is over browning (keep a close watch).




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