Recently I have been experimenting with home made pizza. I was really pleased with how well it turned out.
I love pizza, I could happily eat it most days. I love the way you can add different toppings to get a totally different meal. I have no idea what my favourite toppings are, it varies every time I have it. I kid myself I am eating a healthy option by serving it with plenty of salad.
I usually have frozen pizza in the freezer, it makes for a quick and easy meal when I am feeling rushed. One thing I have never tried to do is make home made pizza from scratch. Bread dough is one of those things I am always a little bit wary about. It takes practice to make the perfect dough, as well as plenty of time for kneading it and resting it.
Pizza dough always seemed more complicated. Whenever I have seen people making pizza dough they seem to spend ages tossing it into the air to make the perfect round shape. I suspect if I tried to do that the dough would end up on the floor and the dog would get it. This weekend I decided I was going to attempt to make my own home made pizza.
First I had to get to grips with the dough in order to make the pizza base. The dough is made from a mixture of flour, yeast olive oil and water. This is all mixed together and then left to stand for a short while. The dough is very stretchy and elastic when it is made and can easily be shaped into thin round bases. I was not tempted to throw it into the air, I just shaped it into a vaguely round circle by pressing it down.
Whilst the dough was easy to make in future I will use baking parchment instead of tin foil to place my base on. After cooking I tried to cut the pizza and found the dough had stuck to the tin foil. Baking parchment would prevent that from happening. If you did not want to top your pizza straight away then you could bake the bases for around five minutes and freeze them for topping at a later stage.
Having made the dough the next step was to make the topping. A simple tomato sauce is easy to make from scratch but I had recently been sent some Cirio products which included Pizzassimo – Pizza sauce.
I have recently tried other Cirio products most recently when I made Italian Tomato baked cod and also in a Mexican Chilli Beef. I had been impressed with the lovely home made taste of the tomato products and was eager to see what this would be like. It was a lovely sauce, you could taste the rich tomato flavour and the tang of the Mediterranean herbs complemented the flavour perfectly. As well as pizza the sauce would make a lovely base for spaghetti bolognese.
The fun part of making a home made pizza is topping it. You can use any ingredients you have in your fridge and make something that is entirely to your taste. I used grated cheese, mushrooms, red pepper, onions and fajita chicken over the top of the pizza sauce. You could use tuna, sweetcorn, ham, pineapple or get really crazy and add something like chocolate and banana. I wonder if that would work?
Once you have added all the toppings you want just bake the pizza in the oven for around fifteen minutes until crisp.
Have you ever made your own pizza? What toppings would you choose? Let me know below.