When the Moon Hits Your Eye

Like a Big Pizza Pie…. That’s Amore!

Today you will be seeing homemade Pizza popping up around the blogosphere, as it is the Daring Baker challenge this month. The recipe came from Rosa’s Yummy yums, one of my favorite blogs that I check regularly. She chose this Pizza Napoletana from Peter Reinhart’s “The Bread Baker’s Apprentice” which is a book I’ve been considering buying, and now really want. You can find the recipe on Rosa’s Blog. The big challenge wasn’t to make the dough, but to learn how to toss the dough, and try to get a photo of yourself doing so. Check out the other Daring Baker’s pizzas here, and my past Daring Baker Posts here.

I was extremely happy when I saw Pizza as the challenge. Now, don’t get me wrong, I make pizza at home fairly often, but have never attempted to “toss the dough” like a real pizzaiolo. I always stretched and rolled the dough into a rough “circle” that was usually more square than round. My sister, Jessica, was here a few weeks ago and we made pizza and tried to throw the dough… it was ugly. One of my first attempts ended with the dough falling on the floor… right in front of the dog dishes… yuck. So I gave up and rolled out the dough for the rest of the pizzas.

As for toppings, I kept it simple. I used homemade bolognese, fresh mozzarella made at a little international market by my house and freshly chopped basil. I usually prefer to use a regular tomato sauce sans meat, but this is what I had leftover in the fridge. It turned out really good… the meat in the sauce made the pizza a little more substantial, but it was still pretty light as I only used a thin coat of sauce.

When I was ready to do my challenge, I really set my mind to it and found that I had to toss AND twirl at the same time. Just throwing straight up does absolutely nothing. Also, it helps to toss it over the counter, so if (when) dropped, the dough lands safely on the counter. When you get the hang of tossing the dough, its amazing how it stays round and gets thin in the middle and slightly thicker at the edges. I could never roll it that perfectly. It was an easy, straightforward recipe, and planned for a cold rise overnight, which is great for making pizza the following day with very little work. This develops a fantastic flavor and a beautiful dough.

Before baked, just a little sauce and cheese… I don’t like to load my pizza with either.

Finally got it!

Check out the unabashed cheesy joy on my face at learning how to toss pizza dough. I look like I’m simultaneously tossing pizza and conducting music. I have to give thanks to Stephan for taking the pics and creating this fabulous animated image.

Bolognese Pizza Recipe

Pizza Dough (I used a 1/2 recipe that made 3 pizzas)
1 c bolognese (meat sauce), cold
8 oz (approx) fresh mozzarella, cut into small chunks
10 leaves fresh basil, chiffonade (cut into strips)

1. Prepare the dough as the recipe states. Make sure you preheat your oven for 30 minutes to 500 degrees with a pizza stone in the center of the oven. (Very important step for crisp pizza!)

2. I don’t have a pizza peel, so I cheat (slightly) when I make pizza. Toss or roll out your pizza dough into a circle and place it on a piece of parchment paper. Add a thin layer of sauce and top with pieces of fresh mozzarella. Use as much or as little as you like… I prefer to use less and have areas where there is no cheese.

3. Quickly and very carefully, slide the parchment lined pizza onto the stone and bake for about 3 minutes. At this time, pull the parchment out from beneath the pizza. It should slide out easily. I use tongs to hold the pizza in place when I do this. Continue baking for another 4-5 minutes until well browned.

4. Remove to a plate, immediately scatter the chopped basil over the top and let cool for a few minutes before cutting. Repeat with the remaining dough.



  • Tanya 11 YEARS AGO

    Beautiful pizzas! The animation of your tossing is so adorable! In my pictures I look like a weirdo! Great work.

  • Dana McCauley 11 YEARS AGO

    Great shots of you tossing your dough! I like your kitchen, too!

  • VeggieGirl 11 YEARS AGO

    That animated photo of you tossing the dough is TOO COOL!!!! Nice work on this challenge!! :0)

  • Olga 11 YEARS AGO

    Super impressive tossing skills!!!!!

  • Patricia Scarpin 11 YEARS AGO

    That is so much fun. Love it!
    I make pizza every Saturday night but have never tossed the dough around either. :)

  • Jescel 11 YEARS AGO

    wow, you look like a pro now! :o) the animated pic is so cool.

  • ashley 11 YEARS AGO

    the animation photo of you tossing the pizza is cute! you look like a pro :-) and i have a sudden craving for pizza before 9am :-)

  • Jamie 11 YEARS AGO

    OMG Candance! This looks amazing!!!! Love the animation hehe… :) YUM!

  • Courtney 11 YEARS AGO

    cool shot in motion, that is so neat. your pizzas look awesome and perfectly tossed. now i have that dang song in my head!!

  • Amanda 11 YEARS AGO

    That animation is awesome! I couldn’t even toss mine up in to the air :) I have really bad hand-eye coordination so figuring out how to toss while twirling was a handful…

  • Aaron K 11 YEARS AGO


  • My First Kitchen 11 YEARS AGO

    So THAT was my problem… just throwing UP instead of TWISTING!! Mine just always fell to the ground/counter in a sad little clump. I’m all over this. And your cabinets are fab.

  • Amber 11 YEARS AGO

    Your pizza looks divine! I am glad you were able to master the art of tossing the dough. It is so fun and rewarding to see a perfect circle just from throwing the dough in the air. Great job!

  • Barbara 11 YEARS AGO

    Such impressive tossing and animation! Sounds delicious!

  • Jacque 11 YEARS AGO

    Wow, look at that smile! So, your pizza looks fantastic and so do you :)

  • Dagmar 11 YEARS AGO

    Beautiful pizza and great tossing photos!

  • Esi 11 YEARS AGO

    Great tossing photos, especially the animation! Love the toppings too!

  • Micha 11 YEARS AGO

    GREAT pictures of you tossing the dough! I share your joy in learning how to toss!

  • Lisa 11 YEARS AGO

    Love your pictures and LOVE the animated gif!! That’s a riot!

    Beautiful pizzas – mmmm. I’m hungry for pizza even before I’ve eaten my [late] breakfast!

  • Zoë François 11 YEARS AGO

    What a lovely shot of you tossing the dough, wasn’t it fun! Your pizza looks wonderful.

  • katy 11 YEARS AGO

    gorgeous! looks awesome — and my dough was untossable too. it still tastes good rolled out!

  • lauren 11 YEARS AGO

    I love the animated picture! My dough was a little finicky,so I couldn’t toss it that high.

  • Maggie 11 YEARS AGO

    The pictures of you tossing are fantastic! I love how thin you got the crust.

  • katie 11 YEARS AGO

    Nice working tossing the dough. Looks like you had fun?

  • peabody 11 YEARS AGO

    Love the action shot…that is super fun.

  • Sophie 11 YEARS AGO

    Great action shots!

    As an onlooker I’ve enjoyed the daring baking much more than normal this month. Love it that everyone has gone for such different pizza toppings

  • Jude 11 YEARS AGO

    Nothing like a nicely made thin crust pizza. Buy the book! It’s one of the best books you can buy :)

  • Amy (Sing for your supper) 11 YEARS AGO

    These are the cutest pictures!! You should frame that last pizza-tossing pic!!

  • Regina 11 YEARS AGO

    Awesome dough-tossing animation! Your pizza looks beautiful, too.

  • Tartelette 11 YEARS AGO

    Absolute fun! You are a natural Candace!! And the final product looks wonderful!

Recent Comments

  • I visited your blog after a long time today and was so thrilled to see all these new posts and the new design. As always, your food looks gorgeous.
  • The best!
  • wow great pictures! the filling sounds really interesting.. I have lots of leftover egg whites that I've been wanting to use up...I'm definitely making them! thanks for the recipe : )
  • I did have this salad when we visited the Philippines! It was certainly delicious and very fulfilling. Although this dish is more Japanese in origin, that restaurant gave it its own twist. The Filipinos really have a good palate for excellent food! Anyway, thank you for the recipe. I will surely give this a try!
  • Absolutely mind-blowing. I tried doing spoons once.....do your spoons have a rounded bowl or a flat surface. Did many break if you were trying to push it in a little to make it have a little depth.

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