This has been on my list of things to do, for a long time now.... Ever since my friends and I made pizza with the guidance of a friend's mom in Coimbatore. With so many of us, we barely got to taste the pizza, but the experience was rather great...
I set about finding the ideal recipe..and realised that they were really very very varied, but there were some good videos on Youtube. So with fingers crossed, I decided to go with approximate measurements and try making a pizza from scratch...
For the base
Plain flour / maida - 2 and 1/2 cups + 1/2 cup (approx)
Salt - 1 tsp
Dry Yeast - 1 tsp (a little less will do)
Sugar - 1/2 tbsp
Warm water - 3/4 cup
Olive oil - 1 tbsp
Sift the flour 2 and 1/2 cups and salt in a large mixing bowl and keep aside. In the warm water add the yeast and sugar, stir and keep aside for 5 to 10 minutes to activate the yeast.
Make a well in the center of the flor and pour in the fermented yeast and the olive oil. Mix well with a spoon. Dust your hands with some flour, add in the remaining half a cup more of the flour 1 tbsp at a time and mix well till all the flour is absorbed and there is a smooth dough of ball, which no longer sticks to the bowl or your hands.
Pummel the dough well to release the air.
In another bowl, rub the inside with olive oil and leave the dough to rise for about 1 hour . Cover with a damp cloth and leave it in a warm place.
After the dough rises, beat the dough thoroughly to release the air. Leave it for another half hour or so and repeat the process.
Cut the ball of dough into 4 pieces to make 8 inch, thin crust pizzas . Refrigerate or freeze the dough at this point according to when you intend to use it.
The Tomato sauce
Oil - 1/2 tsp
Tomato - finely diced - 1
Tomato Puree - 200 gms (1 packet Kissan Puree)
Tomato ketchup - 1 tbsp
garlic - 2 cloves (grated)
Pepper corns - 5 to 6 (crushed)
Red chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
Oregano - 1 tsp
Thyme - 1/2 tsp
Sugar - 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste
Heat everything and let it bubble till it becomes a thick consistency. Switch off the stove and add 1/2 tsp of olive oil.
On the baking tray, flatten the dough with your hands or roll it with a pin to make the base.
Prick holes with a fork to release the air when it bakes.
Lightly coat it with olive oil so the tomato paste does not soak through and leave it soggy.
Layer it with tomato paste, grated cheese (I used Cheezza -mix of Cheddar and mozzarella), onions, green peppers, chicken sausages , olives and yet more cheese.
Preheat the oven , then bake it for 15 minutes at 180 degree C. Eat hot.
The snap taken is of the very first pizza. I took it a bit early, so the crust was not browned well. the next one came out better, but we were in a hurry to finish it off .. so did not think of the camera at all..
I will definitely make more in future...it is a bit of work, but the taste is really wonderful . It did not any ketchup or added herbs. It was simply perfect ...for a first try !