First the dough had to be made so I referred to a great little pizza book, Ben Riccio's Pizza from Naples, for his basic pizza dough recipe.
The following recipe makes enough dough for six 30cm (22 inch) pizzas. I cut this recipe in half, but you can make the pizza base, wrap it in plastic and freeze it for up to two months.
2 teaspoons salt
1kg flour (I used a specific pizza and bread making flour as it is stronger. However, normal plain flour will still work)
Place the water in a bowl with the yeast and salt. Mix this thoroughly (use a small whisk or fork to help) to ensure the yeast is fully dissolved.
Place the flour in a bowl, make a hole in the middle and pour in the mixture of water, salt and yeast. Mix all together to form and smooth dough. I have a dough hook on my Kenwood Mixer (which I LOVE), so I just used this to make a smooth dough.
|Pizza dough after mixing all |
Cover with a tea towel and leave to rest for at least one hour or until it is about double the size.
|Pizza dough after about one hour of resting|
After the dough has risen, cut or break it into pieces to make six dough balls. The balls can be rolled in the palm of your hands or on the kitchen bench with plenty of flour spread over it. Leave the dough balls to rise again for at least one hour. The dough can now be stretched with your hands or, like me, with a rolling pin.
Now the fun part begins...placing whatever toppings you love on to the base. We included garlic, onions, prosciutto, mozzarella, tomatoes, anchovies, fresh basil leaves and olives.
|Our scrummy pizza being sliced with|
the new, very cool pizza cutter
The pizza was delicious, the stone making the base perfect and crispy after only 15 minutes in the oven at the highest temperature of 250 degrees celsius.
For our next pizza attempt, however, I do think my beloved and I need to learn how to transfer our pizza from our working surface to the pizza stone; which has to heat up in the oven to work. We had flour everywhere trying to get the pizza base to move, along with all the toppings, from the upside down tray we were working on to the stone. Apparently a 'pizza paddle' could help, but if anyone out there has any other handing hints...I'm all ears.