A simple, homemade pizza - all made from scratch. Please use good toppings (especially NOT cheap cheese) and you will have a pizza that is so much better than anything you can buy frozen. You have to pre-heat your oven to full whack - whatever it is willing to give you - and have it run at full pelt for at least 15 minutes before putting your pizza in.
Ingredients for 4
Pizza BaseShow US units
|1 1/2||teaspoon||sugar||(8 grams)|
|2||teaspoons||dried yeast||(8 grams)|
|1 1/4||tablespoon||olive oil||(20 mls)|
PizzaiolaShow US units
|1||onion||onion (medium size, 160g each)||(160 grams)|
|2 3/4||cloves||fresh garlic (medium size, 3g each)||(8 grams)|
|1 1/2||teaspoon||fresh basil||(4 grams)|
|1 1/4||tablespoon||dried oregano||(4 grams)|
|1/2||teaspoon||ground black pepper||(1 grams)|
|2 3/4||tablespoons||olive oil||(40 mls)|
Dissolve your dried yeast and sugar in a bit of your lukewarm water and stir well. Let the yeast sit for 20 minutes. Sift the flour, add the olive oil and the salt to it, and then the yeast and the rest of the water. Knead well - this takes 10 to 15 minutes! Then let the dough sit for 2 hours to prove. Knead again, roll out and it's ready to use.
Bake your pizza in the oven at maximum temperature. Yes, that's full whack. A pizza oven does 350 C, so if your oven does less (and it does), crank it up to the max.
Chop the onions and garlic, fry them in olive oil until translucent. Then add the spices and tomatoes. Let it simmer for half an hour to reduce the water content, then take a blender to it and let it cool down.
|Put your flour in a bowl. In this picture, it isn't sifted yet. Sift the flour.|
|Mix the yeast with the sugar and 50ml of your lukewarm water and stir, then let it sit for 10 to 20 minutes until it develops foam on top.|
|Add the olive oil and salt to the flour.|
|This is what the yeast will look like after 10 minutes. Now add the yeast to the flour, oil and salt and add the rest of the lukewarm water. Mix with your hands and knead until you have a smooth dough ... this will take a good 10 minutes hard work!|
|This is what the kneaded dough looks like. If you have any left-over dough, you can easily freeze it in a plastic freezer bag. To thaw it, just leave the bag outside the freezer for a couple of hours and use as normal.|
|Cover the dough with a clean, dry dish towel and let it prove for 2 hours.|
|This is what the dough looks like when it has risen.|
|Take a piece of dough and pat into a round shape as seen here.|
|You can either roll out the dough or pat it on to your pizza dish or baking tray. If you can fling it into the air and turn it, please give me lessons on how to do that!|
|Chop the onions and garlic, fry in olive oil, and add the tomatoes and spices. Let simmer for half an hour to reduce the water content. Then take a blender to it and let it cool down.|
|Spread the pizzaiola on your base - best done by putting a blob into the middle and then moving the pan quickly back and forth. Or just use a tablespoon to spread it.|
|Put on your toppings. Don't overdo it - stick to 2 or three toppings and don't put too much on. An overloaded pizza will get soggy.|
|Put on your cheese. I love mozzarella, but it is entirely up to you what you want to use. Cheddar works quite well, too. Or mix some cheeses - e.g. mozzarella and stilton.|
|Put the pizza into your pre-heated oven (heat up to the maximum - whatever your oven is capable of doing!). After roughly 12 minutes, the pizza is done.|
|Here is quite a different pizza - no pizzaiola, and different vegetables and cheddar cheese. This pizza was cooked on a Cobb Barbequeue for 15 minutes with the lid closed.|