Who doesn’t love pizza? In our house we have it every Friday to mark the beginning of the weekend. I used to buy shop bought pizzas until I started making this brilliant recipe, which gives you all the taste, but at a fraction of the price. Most importantly it is really easy – so easy you don’t even have to hang around waiting for the dough to rise, but you still get pizzeria results. Perfect.
Makes two large pizzas or three medium pizzas
Freezes? Dough freezes well. See freezing section at the end
300g strong bread flour (+ extra for dusting tins)
1 x teaspoon salt (this is essential for the texture of the dough)
1 x teaspoon fast action yeast
1 x tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
200ml Warm water
100 ml passata
16 x thin slices of Napoli Salami
1 x ball mozzarella
2 x red chillies
2 x teaspoon fennel seeds
1 x pinch coarse black pepper
- Preheat oven to highest temperature
- Take a baking tray and place it upside down in the oven on a medium to high shelf
- Take another baking tray and make it non-stick by drizzling with oil. Rub oil in so it is spread evenly across the whole tray. Dust the whole tray with flour tapping away any excess on your clean work surface.
- Put the flour and yeast in a bowl and make a well
- Add 200ml of warm water
- Add the oil and salt
- Stir until ingredients are well combined
- Tip the mixture onto the dusted surface
- Knead for 10 minutes – the dough will feel cold and smooth when it is ready. Dust with extra flour if necessary to stop it sticking.
- When ready put it back in the bowl and cover with a tea towel while you prepare the other ingredients.
- Take the ball of mozzarella
- Squeeze out any excess water and pat dry with kitchen roll
- Tear the mozzarella into small pieces and set aside
- Slice the chillies into thin slices and set aside
- Take the dough and cut it in half (or three pieces if you are making medium pizzas)
- Roll into balls
- Place each ball onto the flour dusted work surface
- Take a rolling pin and roll each base into a large circle – the base should be very thin – approximately 4-5mm
- Place bases onto the floured tins
- Divide the passata and spread onto the pizza bases with the back of a spoon, leaving 1.5cm round the edges.
- Divide the torn mozzarella between the bases
- Add the salami, chillies, fennel seeds and black pepper
- Cover with foil being careful to lift it from the pizza so it doesn’t stick to the ingredients
- Put the pizza in the oven on top of the upside down baking tray, which will be very hot and act as an even surface for the pizza to cook. Cook for 10 minutes
- Remove the foil and cook for another 5 minutes
- When the base is cooked the pizza should easily slide of the tray onto your chopping board. Cook for slightly longer if it doesn’t.
- Cook the other pizza while you are enjoying the first.
- You can bake both at the same time by putting another turned baking tray onto a different shelf, but you will need to increase cooking times by about 5 minutes.
Make double or four times the amount you need. Roll each portion into balls and wrap in cling film greased with oil (see photo below). Freeze and defrost a few hours before needed.
Hello and welcome to my blog.
I have been reading a lot about how expensive food has become lately. The Guardian is full of articles about readers who claim that they have to eat ready meals because they are so much cheaper than making food from scratch. Families saying that £5 for 4 ready meals means that they they have no choice but to buy the ready meals.
Others have been claiming that they are healthy and would like to buy fresh fruit and veg, but can’t afford to, so buy biscuits and chocolate instead.
I have to say that I am baffled by this. I think it is very possible to eat fresh food on a budget, maybe not organic or free range, but definitely cooked from scratch which is infinitely better than a microwave meal. I estimate that on average I spend about £5 for 4 people on most meals. Over the course of the week, I might spend a little more or a bit less but I don’t really shop around and I am sure I could get some items for cheaper than I do.
Anyway, all this talk of people not being able to afford fresh food insipired me to start my blog and share some of my recipes to help people create fresh meals for the equivalent of what they would spend in Iceland!