I can’t really describe the pleasure you get from making something from scratch and it coming out amazing. Lately, I’ve been getting back into making dough. It takes time and practice – so far I’ve only mastered naan breads and pizza bases (my loaf of bread was a bit of a disaster). Pizza dough is honestly one of the quickest and simplest doughs you can make and is SO much cheaper, tastier and healthier than your standard takeaway. You can make as much or as little as you like so you can feed yourself or feed a crew. The benefit of making your own is that you know that goes inside and you can choose what you top it with.
What you will need (for 2 large pizza bases)
So let’s make magic happen!
Place 300g of the flour and salt in the bowl. Make a well and place in the olive oil.
Mix the yeast, lukewarm water and sugar together. The sugar is to “feed the yeast” to start activating it. Leave it aside for 10 minutes until it becomes frothy and bubbling.
Add the yeasty mixture to the bowl and mix well to form a ball. It can be VERY sticky at first, so I like to use a knife to bring it all together.
Time to pour the dough onto a floured surface! Scrap out the bowl with a knife or spoon if needed, it can still be quite sticky at this point.
Start to knead the dough whilst adding the remaining 100g flour in. I find doing it this way makes it super soft and bouncy – ultimately producing a lighter dough. Keep needing until soft, elasticy and the dough has a smooth surface (approx 5-10 mins).
Time to divide the dough and roll out on a lightly oiled baking tray. I like to use frylight for this. Once your desired shape is achieved, leave aside for 10-15 minutes to allow to rise a little before topping.
Whilst the dough is rising, its time to prepare the sauce. Add the chopped tomatoes into a pan and simmer down on a medium heat. This involves the tomatoes becoming thicker in consistency. Mix in the paprika.
Finely chop the cloves of garlic. Place half the garlic in the tomato sauce and set half aside for later to top the pizzas.
When the sauce is bubbling, thick and rich, it’s time to top the pizza bases. Spread generously and evenly, leaving a crust around the edge.
Time to top! Add the mozzarella and any other toppings of your choice at this point. Bake in the oven at around 200c for 10-12 minutes.
Once cooked, add the fresh garlic (mixed with olive oil if prefered) and sprinkle on the basil leaves. At this point, you can also add any additional sauces and fresh herbs you wish.
And voila! Time to tuck in. Each pizza serves 2 or one hungry bear.
Let me know how your recipes go and any magical toppings you invent!