Pizza Base

My recipe originally comes from a gorgeous book called Polpo:  A Venetian Cookbook (of sorts) – isn’t that an amazing title?  I’ve tried so many different recipes over the years and this one is super easy never fails!

Kneading dough is so therapeutic as well.  There’s something about pounding that mixture into the bench top that just beats all the day’s worries into submission!

 

Pizza Base (makes 8-12 small bases)

Ingredients:

15g fresh yeast (or 1 x 7g sachet fast action yeast)

300ml tepid water

500g strong white flour – Italian Type 00 is good

15g (2 tsp) fine salt

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

 

Method:

Whisk together the fresh yeast (if using) and the water.  You can make cold water tepid by adding a splash of boiling water.

In a large bowl, mix the flour, salt and dried yeast (if using) with the olive oil and the yeasty (or plain) water and from the mixture into a ball.

Knead the dough on a floured work surface.  Push the dough forwards and backwards simultaneously with your two hands so that you are stretching it and then pushing it back down into a ball.  Keep this up for around ten minutes, hopefully by this stage, your dough is nice and springy.

Roll the dough back into a ball and flour the top.  Place in a bowl and cover with oiled cling wrap.  Leave to rise in a warm place for at least 10 minutes (but up to 30).  Divide the dough into 8-12 golf ball sized balls and then roll them into thin 20cm discs.  Don’t worry about getting perfectly round and even bases!  It’s actually better if they’re not – you’ll get some lovely bubbling and charring if you’re lucky.

Top with any ingredients you like and bake in a 250°C oven and cook for 6-8 minutes.  Remember that you pizza will benefit greatly from being placed directly onto a hot baking sheet or pizza stone within a pre-heated oven!

Some fave toppings at our house:

  • Home made passata with onion, hot salami, chilli and mozzarella
  • Fresh tomato and mozzarella (with rocket and lemon zest to garnish)
  • Garlic, asparagus and pancetta
  • Thinly sliced potato, rosemary and olive oil