One of our favourite dinners in this house is homemade pizza. You do have to make the dough a day in advance, but we prefer its flavour to takeaway pizzas and there is only one pizzeria in this city who serves a pizza I will happily eat. It’s not difficult, but there are a few steps involved and it takes a little time but is well worth it. You can freeze anything left over that you won’t use. We love the Avoca Café Cookbook‘s recipie (definitely well worth a read). As a variation, I have also pushed some chopped olives into the dough, and also just drizzled some olive oil and crushed garlic on and baked for a minute with a little seasalt as a starter on its own, which is delicious.
Avoca Café Pizza Dough
- 15g/0.5oz fresh yeast (although you can use a single sachet of the instant stuff)
- 1 dessertspoon honey
- 250-350ml/8-12fl oz tepid water (definitely not boiling as this kills the yeast… probably cooler than it comes out of a hot tap)
- 450g/1lb strong flour (I’ve made it with both white and wholemeal strong flour… white tastes nicer, wholemeal is better for you)
- A good pinch of salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
The tomato base can be a mix of fresh and tinned tomatoes mixed with herbs and some gently fried garlic. Put some mozzarella, parma ham, a handful of rocket, some shavings of parmesan, mushrooms etc., on top of the sauce.
- Mix the yeast with the honey first and then add in the tepid water to dissolve, mixing with a wooden spoon. Cover with a teatowel and leave for a half an hour.
- When the half an hour is up, the yeast will have foamed up (it is active) and mix in the flour. Put the teatowel back on and leave a further half an hour.
- Divide the dough into two, and wrap in cling film, put it in the fridge and leave overnight. I once overheard a pizza-maker guy in an italian restaurant say, that if you use the yeast dough too soon, and don’t leave overnight, the yeast will not be finished processing and become difficult to digest.
- the next day you can roll out and pre-bake a little in a hot oven before adding the sauce and toppings. The next time I make this I will post a picture.