Byline: Deborah S. Hartz
It's kitchen magic. From one simple yeast dough you can make garlic rolls, pizza, Italian bread, bread sticks or focaccia. It's easy.
That is, if cooking teacher Richard Cingolani demonstrates the technique. He's also the executive chef at the soon-to-open Angelica Cafe in Wilton Manors, Fla.
He's been using this recipe since 1983, when he owned Cingolani Cucina in Pompano Beach, Fla.
"It's amazing that I have had a long career as a chef, and here I am still making pizza and garlic rolls," says Cingolani as he shows us how to turn a strip of dough into a rich garlic-coated knot or a crisp stick.
Here's what you need to make this versatile but simple dough:
Equipment: An electric mixer or food processor fitted with the metal blade makes mixing and kneading this yeast dough even easier. Of course, if you don't have either you can do both processes by hand.
Yeast: Yeast is a growing single-cell organism that converts its food (in this case, sugar) into carbon dioxide, the gas that makes bread rise. Active dry yeast that you buy in the small envelopes is probably what you will use in this recipe. Those gray particles are alive but dormant because they have been dried. To multiply and grow, yeast needs moisture, food and warmth.
Water: You need 105- to 110-degree water to "wake up" or reactivate dried yeast. "If you are going to err, do it on the side of making the water too cold so you don't kill the yeast with heat," Cingolani says.
Sugar: In this recipe, sugar is the food that feeds the yeast. The relatively large amount of sugar in this dough means it will rise rapidly because there's lots of food for the yeast to turn into carbon dioxide.
When the warm …