Quick & Easy2Make Homemade Pizza!
Updated: Mar 29
Last week I started craving a great tasting pizza but with all my favorite pizzerias closed to the public right now, due to the Covid-19 lock-down measures, I had the choice of having a pizza delivered to my home or making my own! If interested, check out the following links re. my previous blog posts regarding pizza places in Athens: https://www.cook-eat-go.com/post/2019/01/28/satisfying-pizzas-in-athens and https://www.cook-eat-go.com/post/2019/01/31/attention-pizza-lovers-in-athens.
As I don’t like a soggy pizza base that is often the case when you get one delivered (caused by the humidity of the hot pizza when placed in the carton box for delivery) I decided to make my own that I can promise you is a lot better than delivery . . . every time!
Actually, homemade pizzas are amazingly easy to make and often much healthier too . . . as you have control over the fat and ingredients used.
For a great tasting pizza you will need an easy2make dough, a simple pizza sauce and some of your favorite toppings! If you happen to have a pizza stone for the baking, use it, especially when making a thin crust pizza. However if you don’t have one, like myself, just bake the pizza on a baking sheet at the bottom of the oven, at high temperature.
Throughout the years I’ve tested many pizza dough recipes but the one I dug up last week is a real favorite, easy2make that never lets me down! Normally I make it in my Kitchen aid mixer with a pastry hook, in a matter of minutes, but if you prefer or don’t have a strong electric mixer you can of course do it by hand.
Recipe for the Pizza Dough Base
6 g dry yeast (½ packet) 1 ½ dl slightly warm water A dash of ground ginger (1/8-1/4 tsp) 3 dl (210g) all-purpose flour ½ tsp salt 1 – 2 tblsp olive oil
Please note, depending on the flour used, you may need a little more or about 3 ½ dl or up to 240 g flour.
This recipe can easily be doubled and will be enough for 2 large pizzas or 4 smaller ones.
If you use fresh yeast to make the pizza, you will need 12g of fresh yeast for the recipe and when doubled, 25 g of fresh yeast or 1 packet of dry yeast (1 full tblsp).
Recipe for Tomato Sauce ½ of 400g tin chopped tomatoes with onion (In Greece I use Pummaro) 1 tblsp olive oil 1 tblsp tomato paste Fresh basil or other herb, optional
When making this sauce, I often double the recipe as using a whole can of tomatoes is more practical and nothing gets thrown away. You can always freeze whatever you don’t use for the pizza/s to have handy at another time.
Toppings for Pizzas!
For the toppings I made and seen in photos you will need the following: Blanched Asparagus, blanched Spinach, sliced Plum tomatoes, grated Feta Cheese and grated Kefalotiri or any other grated Gruyere type of cheese.
Preparation Method Place yeast with water into large bowl or as I do, into the bowl of my electric mixer. Add the ginger and mix well. Now, add the flour with salt and while mixing at low temperature, add the olive oil.
Once you have a soft, smooth, fairly moist dough remove from mixer and if needed place on a lightly floured surface and knead a wee bit. Now, place into a very lightly oiled bowl to rise and cover with plastic wrap. If you want a really thin crust pizza you can skip this step and instead, just cover the dough with a tea towel and set aside to rest while you make the sauce and prepare the toppings. Make the sauce: Just place the chopped tomatoes with the oil and bring to boil. Lower temperature and let simmer for a minute or two and then mix in the tomato paste and mix well. Set aside to cool while you prepare the topping and get on with the shaping of the pizza base.
Once ready with your sauce and topping/s roll out the dough. If you let the dough rise, knock it down and give it a quick knead. Then, split it into two and place on a floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough into rounds or oval shaped pizzas and once this is done, lift onto lightly floured baking sheets (or covered with parchment paper). If you want a thin crusted pizza the dough needs to be rolled out really thin as keep in mind it will rise in the oven during baking. If you however like a bit thicker crust like I do, make it thin but not too thin!
Smooth a little sauce over dough bases with the back of a spoon. Place asparagus or other topping on top of sauce and scatter with grated cheese or cheeses. Now, if you are using a pizza stone transfer pizza onto stone and place into pre-heated oven 220̊ - 240̊ C.
For a thin crusted pizza, bake in for about 8 – 10 minutes or until crisp. If you don’t have a pizza stone, it’s a good idea to place the pizza dough on sheet on top of another preheated baking sheet or tray. For a thicker crust I don’t do this but I always bake it in the lower part of oven and for a really crisp crust I even sometimes place it directly on the bottom of oven for a couple of minutes . . . but watching it carefully to avoid any burning.
Serve immediately! If you like, before serving drizzle with a little olive oil and sprinkle with chopped fresh herbs of choice . . . and enjoy!
©KaritasM – April 2020