|For the record, I only ate half of this! Plus cold homemade pizza is great as lunchbox-fodder the next day.|
This pizza is pretty fantastic stuff in any case. You can easily make this weeknights for supper, you can add whatever toppings you do or don't like, although it's nice with some pepperoni (not very veggie though) and a handful of rocket salad on top with a nice glass of wine on the side. Although don't go too crazy on the toppings, otherwise it doesn't cook properly and stays all soggy in the middle - my boyfriend always finds this out this hard way.
Flat crust pizza (makes 2 large pizzas)
- 175ml (3/4 of a cup) of lukewarm water
- 1/2 tsp yeast
- 2 cups of plain flour (or strong flour)
- 1/2 tsp salt
Plus, a tin of chopped tomatoes and rosemary for a tomato pizza sauce, plus toppings - mozzarella, pepperoni, peppers, onions, tomatoes, capers...
The secret to this, apparently, is preheating your oven to some insane temperature then getting the pizza in quickly on a very hot baking tray so it crisps up perfectly, but I am nowhere near dextrous enough for that. I do pre-heat very hot, but, I tend to lay my pizza on the back of a tray, then 'decorate' it (hah) carefully before putting in the oven. Basically, step one, pre-heat your oven.
In a bowl, mix the flour and salt. Sometimes I like to try putting dried herbs in at this point - you can experiment as much as you like, it's just dough! If the yeast needs to be activated, stir into the water. Otherwise you can just add the yeast into the flour and mix well. I have spent my entire cooking life up to very recently not using a tbsp/tsp measurer and just kind of winging it, but I have to say this little spoon-device is pretty handy if you're a little on the perfectionist side.
Make a well in the centre of the dry and pour in the water, then use your fingers to mix. When the dough starts to begin to stick together, tip the whole lot onto a well floured surface. Here's how it looks before you tip it out.
Knead for five minutes or so, the texture will change rather dramatically and get all smooth and tacky and elastic. Then using a chopping knife (I love this part) slice the ball in two. Et voila. Now all you have to do is find a handy method for making it into a nice thin pizza - I find a combo of rolling pin - well floured!! - and using my hands to pull it out is the best way.
At some point, you'll need to make a tomato-sauce to spread on top, so chop two or three cloves garlic or onion, whatever you feel like, and put into a sauce pan. Fry lightly in olive oil, maybe add a bit of rosemary or oregano, and then the chopped tomatoes. Give the sauce a stir, just bring to boiling, then take off the heat. Spread over the two pizza bases. Then add your toppings - leaving off the cheese - and put in the oven for five minutes.
This gives the base and toppings a chance to cook. Then after the time is up, remove from oven, add the cheese, and put back in the oven for about ten minutes until it's looking nice and crispy. Yum. If you have the oven space maybe this would be nice for guests, it's always fun letting someone top their own pizza.
Credit where credit is due: The Kitchn