Authentic Italian Pizza
- Pizza Dough: 8 large bases ( too much? just freeze the rest until next time)
- 1000g strong white flour
- 20g sea salt
- 10g dried yeast
- 570ml warm water
- 80ml olive oil
- Pizza base sauce:
- 3 garlic cloves peeled and crushed
- 100g grated cheddar cheese
- 4 slices Bresaola ham
- 4 slices salami
- 3 slices smoked ham
- 1/2 thinly sliced pepper
- 4-5 sliced mushrooms
- 1 sliced tomato
- 1/2 a mozzarella ball roughly torn apart
- 4 slices goats cheese
- 2 tins chopped peeled plum tomatoes
- salt & pepper for seasoning
- 2 tbsp tomato puree
- a pinch of salt
- large handful of fresh finely chopped basil
Getting homemade pizza right can be surprisingly difficult – it is a fine balance of using the right kit, getting the right temperature, the right pizza recipe and confidence. But once mastered – you’ll be creating some amazing pizza recipes and you’ll never look back.
Now time to get your pizza dough right. Master the dough and the rest is easy – don’t skip a step or take short cuts. If the idea of making your own pizza dough is daunting, then cheat and buy pre-made. There are some very good authentic pre-made dough – my favourite is The Northern Dough Co.
After many years of trying all types of pizza dough recipes – this is my favourite for creating thin crust pizza.
Sieve the flour and salt onto a clean work surface and make a well in the middle. In a jug mix the yeast, sugar and olive oil with the water and leave for a few minutes, then pour into the well. Using your fingers gradually mix the flour from the sides into the liquid. Take your time, mix larger amounts of flour in and when it all starts to come together, work the rest of the flour in with your clean, flour-dusted hands. Knead until you have a smooth, springy dough.
When the dough has risen, remove it from the bowl and on a lightly floured surface knock it back, then knead again until smooth, roll into a ball and set aside for 30 minutes to 1 hour until risen again.
Place your dough onto a lightly oiled surface. Cut the dough into about 8 equal sized chunks and roll each one into a ball. Using a rolling pin roll out the dough into the shape you want.
Using about 2 tbsps of pizza base sauce, cover the base of the pizza leaving a rim of about 2 cm. Spread a small amount of the grated cheese over the sauce. This will stop the toppings sliding off when you take the pizza out of the oven. Then evenly distribute the meats and vegetables. Liberally cover with the cheddar, mozzarella, goats cheese and tomatoes and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Using your pizza tools (lightly floured with semolina flour to stop the base sticking) place the pizza into your pizza oven, temperature 350 – 400 F and 2 minutes later you should have the perfectly cooked pizza.
Once you’ve mastered the pizza dough, the fun starts in creating your own favourite pizzas. Anything goes with homemade pizzas.