We love pizza at my home. And what's not to love?! A piece of yeasty dough topped with thick tomato sauce, melted cheese, spicy salami, crunchy peppers... But mere thought of making the pizza dough sometimes prevent me from actually making it... Yes, I admit to occasionally going for the easy option - store bought pizza. No, I'm not proud of it, but let's be honest here - it's cheap, it's quick and kids will eat it! Yes, I have no control over what goes into it - both into the dough and on top of it - but it's also something I don't buy on a regular basis, I don't think it's even as often as once a month.
But I think I have found a resolution to the long process of making the pizza base...
The recipe for this pizza base comes from "30 minute meals" cookbook by Jamie Oliver. One day, just recently, I couldn't figure out what to make for dinner. I couldn't figure it out, as first - there wasn't much in the fridge, second - I didn't have much time to make anything!
All of a sudden I remembered - there surely must be something in that book that I can make, with what I have at hand. And there was!
Jamie's quick pizza is indeed a cheat! You substitute the daunting task of kneading and the time constraint of rising with a bit of hand action (or food processor) and self-rising flour. It's also very quick to assemble and cook. You simply fry the dough on the stove for about 3-4 minutes, and then finish it under the grill. The result? Not too bad, not bad at all actually! It won't have the texture and elasticity that some of the best pizza dough bases have, but if you're a fan of light and crispy crust, this pizza should satisfy you, and no expert kitchen skills needed to make it either! :)
How to make it...
- 1 1/2 mugs of self-raising flour, plus extra, for dusting
- 1/2 mug of tepid water
- pinch of salt
- olive oil
For the topping (really up to you what you like best):
- a small jar of tomato sauce (I had bolognese tomato sauce in my cupboard)
- garlic clove, finely chopped and added to tomato sauce
- a handful of green olives, sliced
- 1 green pepper, deseeded and diced
- small red onion, cut in half and sliced
- few slices of ham, cut into smaller pieces (salami will work great too!)
- 1 mozzarella "ball", torn into small pieces
Other toppings that we also like a lot: mushrooms (sliced), cheddar cheese (grated or thinly sliced), cooked chicken breast (cut into small pieces), cherry tomatoes (cut in half), spinach leaves, goats cheese.
Turn the heat under the frying pan up to high and dust a clean surface with flour. Put 1 1/2 mug of flour into a food processor, then half-fill the same mug with tepid water and add to the flour with a pinch of salt and a lug of olive oil. Whiz until smooth, if you don't want to use the food processor (like myself) just use your hands to do the job. Tip the dough on the floured board. Sprinkle the top of the dough and the rolling pin with flour (it will be quite wet, so be generous). Roll the dough to a 1 cm thickness. Drizzle olive oil into the pan, then dust dough with flour again and very lightly fold it over into a half-moon shape. Lightly fold the half-moon in half, then move the dough to the pan and unfold it, pushing it down into the sides of the pan. If you don't have a big enough pan, halve the dough and make two pizzas.
Pour the tomato sauce over the middle of the pizza base and spread out evenly. Arrange all your ingredients on the pizza base and at the end tear mozzarella into small pieces and dot around. Put the pan under the hot grill for about 5-7 minutes, until golden and cooked through. Remove it from the grill and transfer it to a wooden board. Drizzle over extra virgin olive oil and take straight to the table.
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