Thursday, 23 January 2014

Recipe: Homemade Pizza

I was lucky enough to get a whole bunch of exciting kitchen things from Williams Sonoma for Christmas. One particular set of gifts, which the boyfriend very proudly declared "it has a theme!" included a beautiful Emile Henry pizza stone, pizza cookbook, and pizza cutter. I think he was hinting that I should make some pizza.


Meat & mushroom pizza

I decided to try out all the new pizza stuff while my Mom was visiting from Vancouver Island a few weekends ago. Since we had a busy day planned (including a trip to Tau Bay!) we opted to make the dough in my ancient bread maker. This bread maker used to belong to my mother and it is almost as old as I am. All the pizzas of my childhood originated from this bread maker. You could call it a tried and true pizza dough recipe.
Since I am sure no one reading this blog has an ancient hitachi bread maker sitting around, the dough recipe below is from one of my favorite blogs, Eat, Live, Run (check out her beautiful photos!) and can be made in your kitchenaid stand mixer! I've also included the recipe I use in the ancient hitachi at the bottom, in case anyone out there in the vast interwebs can use it. 


Roasted red pepper & goat cheese
We're a household of his & hers recipes. I love a good veggie pizza, something a bit lighter, whereas the boyfriend likes his loaded with meat, more meat, and double cheese. Add my Mom and sister into the mix, and we are still split right down the middle. So, what's a girl to do? Make two pizzas of course! The showdown was on: roasted red pepper with spinach and goat cheese pizza versus pepperoni, ham, bacon, and mushroom pizza

The verdict? Both were delicious. We did a slightly thicker crust with way more cheese on the meat pizza, thinner crust on the veggie pizza.

Also, the pizza stone was amazing! I definitely recommend investing in one if you don't already have one of these bad boys in your kitchen.


  


Homemade Pizza


Preheat-heat your oven to 450 degrees. If you have a pizza stone, heat it up in your oven.


Pizza Dough


(Recipe from Eat, Live, Run)

Meat & mushroom

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 1/3 cup warm water
  • 1 packet yeast (1 1/2 teaspoons)
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt



Directions

Combine the warm water and yeast in the mixing bowl of your stand mixer. Add in the salt and flour and mix on medium/high speed for about 5 minutes. As it is mixing, slowly drizzle in the olive oil. 


Have a glass bowl ready to go with a little bit of olive oil in the bottom. When the dough is nice and soft and elastic, take it out of the mixer and rub it in the olive oil in the bowl and spread the olive oil around so that it coats the inside of the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap or a dish towel and allow it to rise for an hour.



The main event: Making your pizzas!


The above recipe makes enough for two pizzas, as does my hitachi. Divide your dough.


I roll my dough out on cornmeal as opposed to flour. This way it doesn't stick to your pizza stone and it doesn't burn like flour does. 


Once you've assembled your pizza, slide it directly onto your very hot pizza stone. Bake at 450 degrees for approximately 12-15 minutes. Allow it to cool for a few minutes before serving.



The Sauce


If you wanted, you could make your own slow-simmered-from-scratch pizza sauce, preferably with San Marzano tomatoes. But really, who has that kind of time? If you are one of the lucky few, I'm jealous! However, for most of us, that's not a reality.


I usually just grab a jar of plain old Hunt's tomato sauce or whatever looks good from the grocery store. Dice up a little bit of garlic and onion and saute in a touch of olive oil. Add some salt, pepper, dried oregano, and chili flakes (totally optional). Mix in the tomato sauce and simmer for 5-8 minutes. That's about as fancy as my tomato sauce gets.



The Veggie Pizza:



Roasted red pepper & goat cheese
  • 2 large red peppers, roasted (see below)
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup fresh baby spinach
  • 1 cup fresh mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 1/4 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 cup fresh goat cheese, cut into small chunks
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella/asiago blend

Roasted Red Peppers

Wash your red peppers and preheat your oven (I used my toaster oven to be honest) to about 425. Place the red peppers directly on the rack in your oven, with a cookie sheet covered in tinfoil below to catch any drippings. It will take about 35-45 minutes to roast your peppers, depending on their size. Turn them occasionally so that the skin blisters on all sides. 


Take the pepper out of the oven and place them in a bowl. Using a knife, pierce the skin of the peppers. Tons of moisture will come out. Once the peppers have cooled, peel off the skin and remove any seeds that didn't already ooze out. Slice the delicious roasted red peppers into thin slices for your pizza.



Meat & mushroom
The Meaty Pizza:

  • 1 cup ham, sliced
  • 1 cup pepperoni
  • 1/4 cup crumbled bacon
  • 1 cup mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 1/4 cup tomato sauce
  • 2 cups mozzarella/asiago




Tips for Assembling your Pizza

Once you've rolled out your dough, always start with the tomato sauce. Add a sprinkling of cheese next - this ensures the toppings won't slide right off your pizza! Raw onions should also be added right into the tomato sauce as it will help them cook. Then spread your toppings on however you would like. Mushrooms should be closer to the top, to ensure that they cook through as well. 


We like to sprinkle our pizzas with a little bit of chili flakes before baking, but this is just our personal preference. 


Making pizza at home is really the perfect opportunity to make something exactly the way you want it! The sky is the limit in terms of pizza toppings, sauces, and combinations. What are some of your favorite pizza toppings? 



--
Pizza Dough in the Hitachi Bread Maker

Place all ingredients in the bread maker and select dough - mine takes 1 hour and 40 minutes

  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup cornmeal
  • 3 tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 3 cups white flour
  • 1 tbsp yeast