Do you know anybody who doesn’t love pizza?
What’s not to like? Crispy base, zingy tomato sauce, toppings all blanketed under oodles of cheese… a slice of paradise.
But those “proper” woodfire oven pizzas, they don’t come cheap at 20 bucks a pop.
So I make homemade pizza quite often.
But ever so often, I just can’t be bothered waiting for the pizza dough to prove, etcetera, etcetera… So I try this cheat’s version. Italian purists, please don’t crucify me!
The dough and the sauce are both dead easy to make and you can go as plain or as fancy as you want with the toppings.
Give it a try. As the title says, it really is easy-peasy.
For the Pizza Dough
Requiring just flour, yoghurt and a pinch of salt, you can make this dough in ten minutes’ flat since you don’t even need to wait for the dough to prove.
2 cups self-raising flour
1 cup natural yoghurt (or Greek-style yoghurt)
1/2 tsp salt
* Mix all ingredients together in a big bowl and knead the dough.
* It may seem quite sticky at first, but knead for at least five minutes.
* If the dough is still too sticky by now, add more flour little by little until the dough comes together properly.
* Knead until the dough is pliable.
* The amount of extra flour you may have to add depends on how much whey is in your yoghurt.
*Divide the dough in half and set aside while you make the sauce and prepare your toppings.
Makes two medium-size pizza bases.
For the Pizza Sauce
I’ve seen Jamie Oliver make something like this on one of his cooking shows.
1 can diced tomatoes
1/2 onion, finely diced
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp sugar
1 chilli (optional)
A few basil leaves, finely chopped
Salt and pepper to season
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
* Sauté the onions, garlic (and chilli, if using) in some olive oil until golden. Add the tomatoes, sugar and paprika and cook until thick – about 15 minutes.
* Season with salt and pepper.
* Turn off heat. Add basil and vinegar.
This sauce can also be used as a basic pasta sauce.
To put your pizza together:
Preheat oven to 220°C (or 200°C fan-forced).
Divide your pizza dough in half. Roll out each piece in a circle on a floured surface with a rolling pin. Transfer onto your pizza baking trays or pizza stone.
Using the back of a spoon, slather your sauce onto the base.
Sprinkle on some stretchy cheese like buffalo mozzarella, provolone or baby bocconcini. I prefer to do this before I add on my toppings as this allows the cheese to stay stretchy.
Put on your favourite toppings. You can go gourmet: think prosciutto with goats’ cheese, walnuts and fresh figs OR roast pumpkin, pancetta and rocket OR Serrano ham, olives and artichoke hearts.
Or you can take a page out of my book and use any food scraps languishing in your fridge: last night’s leftover chicken, old veggies that can be grilled/roasted and then used as toppings, herbs growing on the window sill… Get creative!
Sprinkle on some stretchy cheese like buffalo mozzarella, provolone or baby bocconcini.
Drizzle olive oil on top.
Bake until the crust is crispy and the cheese has just melted.
Mmmm… A slice of heaven!
So tell me, do you choose crispy or thick when it comes to your pizza base? What toppings are your favourite? Do you have your local pizza place on speed dial?