Who can resist oven fresh pizzas?? Here’s a step by step guide to make your very own, home baked pizzas. The original recipe is a result of research and experimentation carried out by Lakshmi who is obsessed with pizzas. It has been posted at The Yum Blog (her other blog) earlier.
The recipe yields a crust that is “neither too thin, nor too thick”and “crisp on the outside, soft inside” which works with us very well.
Pizza with Wasabi-Olive Oil Sauce Topped with Spinach, Onions, Tomatoes and Peppers with Mozzarella Cheese
Makes: Two 12 inch Pizzas
For the Base/ Crust/Pizza Dough
- Water – 1 cup
- All Purpose Flour – 2 1/2 cups (plus extra for dusting)
- Corn Flour – 3 tbsp
- Sugar – 1 tsp
- Honey – 1 tbsp
- Active Dry Yeast – 2 tsp
- Salt – 1 tsp
- Olive Oil – 3 tbsp
- Dried Herbs of Choice – 2 tbsp (optional)
- Sauce of choice – 2 tbsp (or Olive Oil)
- Toppings of choice – 1 1/2 – 2 cups sliced and sauted (tossed in 4-5 tbsp of sauce of choice if you like)
- Cheese of choice – 1/2 cup (grated) (or 6 tbsp for each pizza)
- Warm 1 cup water. Water that you can dip your finger in is warm enough. Dissolve the sugar, add honey and yeast. Let it stand for 5 minutes. Dissolve the yeast.
- Mix All Purpose Flour, Corn flour, Salt and Basil. Dissolve one cup of the flour mix to dissolved yeast. Add the second cup and combine by whisking in one circular direction with your hand. Add the remaining flour and whisk into a dough. Add the olive oil 1 tbsp at a time while combining into dough. The dough will be loose but well combined and smooth. The dough is not kneaded.
- Divide the dough into two. Cover and let it rise in a warm place until its almost doubled. This should take about 1-2 hours.
- Flour the pizza pan. Preheat oven to 250 degrees C.
- Take one portion of the dough onto the pizza pan and using your palm pat into thin circular disk till it covers the pan. You can use a rolling pin. Dust with adequate flour while stretching. If the dough bounces back, let it rest for a while and stretch. Cut out any extra edges. The edges of the base should be slightly thicker. Using a fork prick all over the base.
- Spread 1 tbsp of the Sauce. Spread Toppings. Bake for 10 – 15 minutes or until the crust turns golden or cheese starts to brown. Or bake the base for 5 minutes. Take out spread the sauce and toppings and bake for an additional 5 to 15 minutes. Your method will depend on choice of sauce/ toppings (the amount of water or liquid content) and how hot your oven can get.
- Take out from oven and let pizza cool down before transferring to serving plate. Repeat with the remaining dough.
- Slice into pieces and serve.
Whole wheat pizza with Garlic Olive Oil Sauce topped with Sun dried tomatoes, jalapenos and coloured peppers with cheddar cheese
Whisk the dough together. Do not knead like you do for rotis unless you want a tough chewy crust.
You can replace half of the AP flour with wheat flour. Be sure to increase the water by 1/2 cup. Pay attention to the dough consistency while determining water content, it needs to be loose. If you’re using 100% whole wheat you’ll need 1 cup of water for 1.5 cups of flour.
Dough kept overnight in the fridge (at least 12 hours) and rested about an 1 hour outside before baking produces better results. Reduce yeast to 1 tsp in this case. Its not necessary to allow dough to double before refridgeration, about 1 hour of rising time is sufficient.
Allowing the dough to rise too much can result in a bready pizza base rather than a thin crisp one. Dough that’s risen too much when rolled out thin will yield a hard biscuit and not a crust.
Incorporating more than the needed amount of dough while rolling out the pizza crust can lead to a very hard crust. Use only as much as needed to prevent dough from sticking while rolling out.
Pizza topped with corn, onion, tomato, bell pepper and loads of cheese
Mandira’s notes: I used a corn, onion, tomato and bell pepper topping, with loads and loads of cheese. The pizza turned out well. The only thing that went wrong was that I used Fun N Food Pasta and Pizza Sauce. That’s what killed the pizza. The sauce is so sour that its distracting. So whatever you do, don’t try this sauce. A thin layer of good old tomato ketchup would work better. I used Brittania cheese cubes because that’s what I had in the home but mozzarella would probably have been better.
I made the dough for the base time for the very first time and so I dint want to experiment too much. In terms of herbs, I stuck to good old oregano. I let the dough rise for around 6 hours and then kept it in the fridge. I rolled out one of the bases a little thin which made it hard and crusty. Fortunately the other one turned out fine.