Pizza is often the food we eat when we are too tired to cook and just want to order something in, but there’s really nothing that compares to homemade pizza! Take some freshly made dough, combine it with a bunch of different toppings that people can choose to customise their own pizza, add some oozy mozzarella, and pretty soon the smell of baking pizza is filling the house. A New York style pizza dough creates a thin floppy crust that is the base for minimal, well chosen toppings. This isn’t one of the super-sized, multi-topping, stuffed crust behemoths being offered by the big pizza chains, and it won’t leave you in a greasy food coma.
Pizza dough (makes 4 x 12″ pizzas)
1 1/2 cups warm water
4 1/2 cups plain flour (bread and pizza flour works especially well)
1 tbsp olive oil
2 1/2 tsp sugar
2 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp yeast
Toppings (for one pizza)
2 cloves garlic
Handful eggplant bacon
1/2 cup mozzarella
1 vegetarian sausage
Handful fresh basil leaves
To make the dough:
Preheat oven to 260 degrees.
Dissolve sugar and salt in water in a large bowl. Add oil and flour and stir to form a dough.
Turn out to a lightly floured surface and press into a circle. Sprinkle yeast evenly over dough and knead for 12 minutes. Divide into 4 portions and roll into a smooth ball. Place them in a bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to prove for 1-2 hours at room temperature.
Place dough on a lightly floured surface and roll out into a circle. Place on a pizza tray and add toppings and cheese. This will work with pretty much any topping you can think of. I recommend beginning with tomato paste and garlic and building up from there. I used a handful of leftover eggplant bacon in this one – you can find the full recipe for that here. Everything else is pretty self explanatory. I would not recommend using anything too wet, but roasted or grilled vegetables, fresh herbs, olives or chilli flakes would all work really well here.
Bake for about 20-25 minutes until crust is golden and cheese is melted. Slice and serve with a cold beer, and some great company!