Pizzas

Sneaky Lemon
Sat, 21 Jul 2012 08:48:00 +0000
So I thought I'd have a go at making pizzas yesterday seeing as they are the perfect Friday night food! This turned out to be a a lot easier than I thought it would be. The only problems I had were in stretching out the pizza bases to get them thin enough for my liking. The dough and the pizza sauce is the main part of this recipe, the toppings on the pizza are a bit random but I'll let you know what they are anyway. The dough and sauce ingredients are enough to make two thin base pizzas. For warning now, I leave the dough for the pizza to rise for about 30-45 minutes and it will take a good 10 minutes to shape the bases. All in all it is quite a quick pizza recipe. What you'll need for the dough is: 300g Strong Bread Flour, plus a fair bit extra for dusting; 1 tbsp Olive oil; 1 tsp Yeast (instant or fast action); 1 tsp Salt 1/2 tsp Sugar; and 210ml Warm Water. What you'll need to make the sauce: 200g Passata; 80g Tomato Puree; 1 tsp Chilli Flakes; 2 tsp Oregano; 1 Clove of Garlic, Crushed. Pinch of Salt and Pepper. What I used for the toppings on Pizza 1: 50g Chorizo, sliced finely and torn; A handful of Kalamata Olives; 10 Basil Leaves; An artichoke, (in oil) cut into chunks; 2 tbsp Parmesan; and A handful of diced Mozzarella.  What I used for toppings on Pizza 2: A handful of sweet corn; 1/3 of a Red Onion, finely sliced; 6 Peppadew Peppers, halved; 1 small Green Chilli, finely sliced; 2 tbsp Parmesan; and A handful of diced Mozzarella.  Once you have all our ingredients together you want to make the dough about an hour before you want the pizza. That being said it is ok to let the dough rise for longer or shorter periods of time. the recipe is pretty flexible in that respect. Right, now how to make the pizzas: 1.   In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, sugar and yeast then make a well in the centre and add the water oil and salt. (You add the salt after you have mixed through the yeast as the salt will kill the yeast if added on top of the yeast and will impede the fermentation that occurs at the rising stage.) 2.   Once it is all combined you should have a wettish dough. Flour your hands and the work surface liberally then turn the dough out on to it and knead until it starts to become smoothish (it doesn't need to be perfectly smooth), about five minutes of kneading.  3.   Grease the large mixing bowl with a little olive oil and put the ball of dough back into it. Cove the bowl with cling-film or a tea towel and set down in a warm place for 30-45 minutes.  4.   While the dough is rising you can make the sauce for the base. All you need to do for this is to add all of the ingredients for the base into a small sauce pan and simmer for 10 minutes. (Hey presto, super easy pizza sauce.) 5.   If your still waiting for the dough, prepare all your other pizza toppings; cut meat, grate cheese, etc. 6.   When the dough is risen you need to pre-heat your oven to 180C (fan oven) and put the trays you are going to cook the pizzas on in the oven as well so they can heat up. Putting your pizzas on to hot trays will help you get a nice crispy base. I don't have any pizza baking sheets so I use upside down baking trays. 7.   Separate the dough into two equal parts and begin the joyful (pain in the butt) task of shaping the dough. I used a combination of rolling it out with a rolling pin and stretching it with my hands with my hands that worked rather well. I also tossed it in the air a couple of times but as I was unable to catch it 80% of the time this was more for my entertainment than for any useful purpose. I should mention that the dough rises slightly in the oven so make sure they are a little thinner than you want them. 8.   When you have shaped the dough you should have to lovely ?circular? 12" pizzas. Pop these on to two pieces of (well floured) grease proof paper so you can slide them easily onto the hot trays in the oven. Cover them both evenly in sauce and then decorate with the toppings of your choice. 9.    Put them into the oven one at a time by sliding them off the paper onto the hot trays. you will need to flour the trays a little first. However, if like me, your pizzas refused to part from the grease proof paper you can just slide the whole thing on to the hot tray, paper and all (no need to flour the tray). Don't worry, it will come off fine when it is cooked! 10.   Cook the pizzas in the oven for 10-12 minutes (until the cheese starts to go golden on top). Keep an eye on them in the last few minutes as everyone's oven works differently.  11.   Remove and enjoy :), careful though as they are hot :).
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