The BEST homemade pizza recipe!

19.11

The-Best-Homemade-pizza-recipe-Cider-with-Rosie

T R I E D   A N D   T E S T E D  . . .

‘The best, really Rosie?’ is what I’m certain you’re all thinking right now. ‘This is the best!’ is a bold claim to make about anything! Especially about something as personal as pizza…

But is it true? Well, as my About page says, I’ve been quietly but obsessively testing homemade pizza recipes and cooking methods for getting on for five years now, and this beauty here?

It honestly and truly knocks every other pizza recipe I’ve ever tried clean out of the park.

And the best thing about it is that you don’t need anything fancy like a pizza stone to make it!

Let me share my secrets with you…

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The magic of this pizza comes in the way we cook it.

Instead of relying on the heat from an oven, which I find always leaves my pizzas either overly crunchy (is there anything worse than a dried-out pizza?) or disappointingly doughy, we cook the base in a frying pan instead.

That’s right, in a frying pan!

The searing heat of the pan cooks the dough quickly, whilst at the same time encouraging it to become light and aerated. Then, all that’s needed is a quick 5 minute blast in the oven to cook the toppings and add a little colour to the crust, and we’re done!

The base is so flavoursome and chewy and light, and has that sourdough-like quality that I love most in the pizzas made by my favourite Italian restaurants.

Enough convincing? Here’s how to make it…

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I’ll write out the method and ingredients list in full at the end of the post, but thought it might be handy to have the step by step instructions alongside photos too!

01. Step one is to make the dough. Put 500g of strong white bread flour, 10g of salt and 5g of dried, fast-acting yeast into a large bowl, and then pour in 350ml of warm water. The water should be a little above blood temperature- you want it about the sort of temperature of a nice warm bath!

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02. Stir the water into the flour until a rough ball forms, and then bring it together with your hands. The dough will, and *should*, be sticky.

03. Knead the dough by stretching it between your hands in the air, over and over again. Stretching the dough in the air, instead of folding it over on a work surface, will help develop the gluten structure and make the pizza bases lovely and maleable later on.

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04. After 10 minutes of kneading the dough will have become smooth, as shown above. Place it into the well-floured bowl, then cover the bowl with clingfilm and leave in a warm place to rise for *at least 2 hours*.

*Do not skimp on this step! A 1 hour rise might seem good enough, but I promise, the flavour that results from a longer rise is absolutely worth the wait!*

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05. After 2 hours, the dough will have doubled in size and will be lovely and light. Gently press all the air out of the dough using your hands, adding in a little flour if the dough still feels sticky to the touch.

At this point, preheat the oven to 220 degrees celsius.

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06. Divide the dough into 4 equal sections, covering over any dough you aren’t working on with a tea towel to keep it from drying out.

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07. On a floured work surface, begin to press out a section of the dough into a rough circle.

You can then being to stretch the dough between your hands (I prefer not to use a rolling pin here, as stretching makes the pizza bases lovely and chewy!).

I use a few techniques here to work the dough- pulling lightly around the edges of the base to stretch them out, draping the dough across the backs of my hands and carefully pulling outwards to make the centre of the base thin, and also allowing the weight of the dough to stretch itself out.

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08When the dough is beginning to resist stretching, lay it out on a floured surface and then begin to work on a second section of the dough. After it’s had chance to rest, you can stretch it again a little further to get a lovely wafer-thin centre and slightly thicker edges.

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09. Repeat until all the bases have been stretched, rested, then stretched again.

10. Heat up a large, dry non-stick frying pan over a high heat, and then carefully lay in one pizza base at a time.

Cook the bases for 1 minute per side, and then transfer to a baking tray. Each side of the base should be a pale biege colour, with a few dark brown spots.

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11. Spoon some tomato sauce into the centre of pizza, and then spread out in a thin layer.

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12. Top with a few torn shreds of buffalo mozzarella, and any other toppings you might fancy. We especially love finely sliced red peppers, a few olives, and some caramelised onions. Oh, and some rocket thrown on after cooking…

13. Place the pizza, on a tray, into the centre of the preheated oven. Cook for 5 minutes until the toppings are cooked and the crust is lightly golden, and then remove.

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And that’s it, simple as that!

Below is the recipe written out in full, for those of you who prefer ingredients and method all in one solid chunk…
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T H E   F U L L   R E C I P E   > >

Ingredients
500g strong white bread flour
10g salt
5g dried fast acting yeast
350ml water

{For the pizza sauce}

1 can chopped tomatoes
Small handful basil leaves
1 garlic clove
1tbsp balsamic vinegar
Toppings of choice.

- Put the flour, salt and yeast into a large bowl, and then pour in 350ml of warm water. The water should be a little above blood temperature- you want it about the sort of temperature of a nice warm bath!

- Stir the water into the flour until a rough ball forms, and then bring it together with your hands. The dough will, and *should*, be sticky.

- Knead the dough by stretching it between your hands in the air, over and over again. Stretching the dough in the air will help develop the gluten structure and make the pizza bases lovely and maleable later on.

- After 10 minutes of kneading the dough will have become smooth. Place it into the well-floured bowl, then cover the bowl with clingfilm and leave in a warm place to rise for *at least 2 hours*.

~ ~ ~

- After 2 hours, the dough will have doubled in size. Gently press all the air out of the dough using your hands, adding in a little flour if the dough still feels sticky to the touch.

- Divide the dough into 4 equal sections. On a floured work surface, begin to press out a section of the dough into a rough circle.  You can then being to stretch the dough between your hands (I prefer not to use a rolling pin here, as stretching makes the pizza bases lovely and chewy!).

- When the dough is beginning to resist stretching, lay it out on a floured surface and then begin to work on a second section of the dough. After it’s had chance to rest, you can stretch it again a little further to get a lovely wafer-thin centre and slightly thicker edges.

- Repeat until all the bases have been stretched, rested, then stretched again.

- Heat up a large, dry non-stick frying pan over a high heat, and then carefully lay in one pizza base at a time. Cook the bases for 1 minute per side. Each side of the base should be a pale biege colour, with a few dark brown spots.

~ ~ ~

- Spoon some tomato sauce into the centre of pizza, and then spread out in a thin layer. To make the sauce, simply heat up one crushed garlic clove in a splash of olive oil, and then pour in a can of crushed tomatoes, 1tbsp of balsamic, and add in some basil leaves. Heat for a minute, and then allow to cool slightly.

- Add on any toppings, and then cook the pizzas for 5 minutes in an oven at 220 degrees.

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And that, my friends, is how you make the very best homemade pizzas! You must let me know if you give the recipe a go. It really is a corker!

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