I’ve never made pizza before, well not properly anyway. I’ve bought bases and passata and the kids have made them, but I’ve never done one from scratch before. So a couple of weeks ago I bit the bullet and made pizza dough, and it was a major success. This recipe makes enough for two huge pizzas, so I froze (yes froze) half the dough and resurrected it last weekend, and that was a success too. Give it a whirl, but make sure your kitchen floor is squeaky clean if you’re going to try hand throwing the dough (a bit like playing frizbee, except you have to throw and catch it yourself). We have the Saturday Kitchen Cooking Bible to thank for the original recipe, although I may have tweaked it a bit to suit the contents of my fridge.
500g ’00’ flour (pasta flour) – strong white bread flour will do
1/2 tsp salt
7g fast action yeast
1 tbsp olive oil
approx 300 ml tepid water
Place the dry ingredients into a bowl, make a well in the centre & pour in the oil. Gradually stir in most of the water until it forms a soft dough.
Tip out onto a floured work top and knead for 5 minutes, until smooth and elastic. Shape into a ball and leave to rise in a lightly greased bowl, covered with cling film.
When the dough has doubled in size (approx an hour) remove and knead on a floured surface for a further two minutes.
Divide the dough in half, and freeze at this stage if you’re not cooking it all.
Roll out the dough into a rough circle,ultimately about 5mm thick. If you fancy it, try throwing the disc in the air in a spinning motion and catching it between two hands. This is great fun, but not for the faint hearted (or those with a particularly low kitchen ceiling).
Preheat the oven to its maximum heat and allow it time to really warm up, place a heavy baking sheet in the oven to heat up.
200g good quality tinned plum tomatoes, blitzed gently in a processor to a puree.
1 mozzarella ball, half grated, half sliced
20g Pecorino cheese, grated
a couple of fresh tomatoes, sliced or halved, depending on size
a good handful of rocket
sea salt & freshly ground pepper
Spread the tomato puree thinly over the pizza base, almost to the edge, and scatter over the grated mozzarella and pecorino. Scatter the fresh tomato on the top and finish with torn basil leaves. Add the mozzarella slices, a good drizzle of olive oil and a little sea salt and pepper.
Transfer the pizza to the hot baking sheet and bake near the top of the oven until the cheese is bubbling and the crust is brown and has risen (approx 10 minutes). Scatter over the rocket and serve.