How to Storing the Dough

We put our pizza dough in the refrigerator to rise, placing the balls of dough on a floured baking pan covered loosely with a clean, damp kitchen towel. The chill leads to a slow rise, so we generally allow it to go overnight, or for at least six to eight hours. For a faster rise, leave the dough out on a countertop, similarly covered. It should be ready — that is, roughly doubled in size — in three or four hours.

Time imparts a marvelous tanginess to pizza dough, but it extracts a price as well. What you want to avoid is a skin developing on the dough. When the dough has risen, if you are not going to use it right away, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, or place it in a quart-size plastic bag. Pizza dough so wrapped will last in the refrigerator for three days or so.

Another option is to freeze the dough using this incredibly easy freezer dough recipe. Make it, put it in the freezer in a freezer-safe plastic bag, and then move it to the refrigerator on the morning of the evening you want to cook.

If you end up making pizza at least once a week, consider investing in a few pizza dough pans, available in restaurant supply stores.

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