As promised, here is the recipe for my pizza.
The dough is probably the most important part of the pizza (followed closely by the cheese. I like to use my family’s focaccia recipe. I am not entirely sure where it came from originally, either from a relative somewhere, or a recipe that we looked up and modified. I get it out of our family cookbook (good idea, by the way. Every family that cooks should make a family cookbook). Either way, here it is.
Flour – 2 1/3 cups (Bread flower or some other high gluten is best. The more gluten, the more stretch.)
Water – 1 1/4 cup, tap hot
Salt – 1tsp
Yeast – 1tbsp
Put the ingredients in a bread machine on manual and click go. Okay, I know that sounds like cheating, but it works great. If you want to make it by hand, do so, although I won’t be able to tell you how to do it.
This isn’t really a sauce, just some tomatoes with a little added zing
3 or so nice tomatoes
Fry your garlic and pepper, add tomatoes.
Let that cook for a little while, and then turn off the heat.
The great thing about pizza is that to be great, it is really simple to make an amazing pizza.
Some fresh mozzarella
Fresh Basil leaves
Pecorino, parmesan, or some other hard cheese for grating.
Olive oil (of course)
Preheat your oven as hot as it will go. For me that is 550. Make sure you have a rack at the lowest possible setting.
Generously douse your pizza pan in oil, and put your dough ball on it. Slowly work it until it is roughly the shape and size of a pizza. If you have a smaller pan, you might want to divide your pizza up into more than one.
Add your tomatoes.
Add your mozzarella. Don’t worry about making it too even, mozzarella melts amazingly and gets everywhere.
And the basil of course. Legend has it that the traditional ingredients of tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil were chosen by a chef in Naples to commemorate Princess Margherita’s visit by emulating the new flag of Italy.
That said, I think they are better with a bit of parmesan or pecorino on the top.
Put your pizza in the oven, at the bottom and cook.
*Make sure you close the oven though, it won’t work very well otherwise.
Mine takes 15 minutes or so, but I have heard of pizzas getting cooked much faster. Just wait for it to be crispy and delicious.
And, since this is still the Random Rovings, here is the Gratuitous Close-up.
Ha! I fooled you. You thought this was just going to be another picture of the finished pizza.