It may be a tad cliche, but pizza is seriously be one of the best foods in the whole world. Sam and I can go through a pizza like nobody’s business. It’s such an easy solution to everything. Not enough time to make dinner: Order a pizza! Not sure what you’re really in the mood for: Order a pizza! Picky guests coming over for dinner: Order a pizza?
But sometimes I like to step up my game and that’s when I make pizza. Here’s one of my favourite pizza recipes!
(Now I am hungry for more pizza)
Here’s a secret. I don’t own a pizza stone or one of those fancy wooden pizza paddles. I just graduated from my MA program so I can’t afford to just stroll down to the local culinary excessiveness shop. So if like me, you do not have any of that pizza accoutrement sitting on your pristine counter have no fear! Homemade pizza is still within your grasp. I have a round pizza tray that I like to use (the kind that someone may have purchased during University when they lived on frozen pizza). I keep it in the oven while it preheats and then lightly dust it with flour and cornmeal before putting the pizza on it. If you don’t have a pizza tray you can also just flip over a cookie sheet, dust it the same way and make your pizza there!
While it’s super easy to make, pizza from scratch does require some forethought because you have to let it rise. But it’s totally worth it.
I like to use this dough recipe via Smitten Kitchen
. It makes a perfect pizza for two!
6 tablespoons of warm water (At most 1 or 2 additional tablespoons may be required)
2 tablespoons white wine
3/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 cups of flour (or about 190 g for those of you in the UK)
Clove of garlic
Whisk the wine, yeast and warm water together until the yeast dissolves. Then add the salt, olive oil and honey and continue to stir. Add the flour in 1/4 cup at a time. The dough may look really dry but just keep working it and it will come together. (If it is really being stubborn add 1-2 tablespoons more of warm water).
Flour the counter, turn it over and knead. For those of you that are obsessed with the Great British Bake-off like me Paul Hollywood takes at a load of stress and tension out on some dough being kneaded. Follow Paul Hollywood’s example. After a minute or two put the dough into a large bowl lightly greased with olive oil, cover it in plastic and let it rise. I always put the bowl in the warmest room in the flat, close to a radiator or else it never rises. But hopefully that’s my bad luck with cold flats and y’all live somewhere that heats up much more efficiently! Let it rise for 2 hours or until it’s doubled. (The dough will spring up when you press on it if it is ready.)
When the dough is ready preheat the oven to about 475 F or 250 C. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and gently deflate it before you start to roll it out. (Another trick for the kitchen gadgetless- if you don’t have a rolling pin, next time you have a bottle of wine save it, peel the label off, wash it and voila! A rolling pin!)
I love a pizza with sauce, but since this crust is reasonably thin here I forego it. But don’t worry, the pizza doesn’t suffer in taste!
So after the dough is rolled out place it gently on your pre-floured pizza cookery object. Then I like to brush the top with olive oil and massage some crushed garlic into the dough. Use your hands! Don’t be shy. Then I slice the mozzarella and tomatoes and add liberally to the top of the pizza. In Sam’s opinion, the more the better. Add as much basil as you want. I like my pizza with a bit of a kick so I always add some crushed chile flakes before putting in the oven.
Bake for 15-20 minutes depending on your oven. Enjoy!