Monday, 2 February 2009


Blimey, how cold was it this weekend? What a cracking amount of snow! And as predicted things come to a standstill! I managed to make it to work which was not the case for most of my colleagues. It’s deserted.

On Saturday night Thomas and I made pizzas. It’s such a great thing making fast food for yourself. Once perfected it can be so much more satisfying than the convenience foods that we’re tricked into thinking can only be done by the experts, if you can call them experts. The best pizza I’ve ever had was, predictably, in Italy. I’ve not found a great one in London, nothing that wows so we attempted to produce something superior at home.

We selected various toppings at the deli and I set to work making the dough whilst Thomas got stuck into the tomato sauce.

For the Sauce (we made LOADS of sauce to freeze and use for other things like meatballs):

2 large jars passata
3 cloves of garlic
1/2 onion
1 bunch of basil stalks
1/4 pint milk
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp dried chilli

The sauce was amazing, reducing down whilst I worked away at the dough, I don’t really have suitable arms for this kind of job but I did my utmost!

For the dough (enough for 4 large pizzas):

12 oz strong flour
400ml hand hot water
1 sachet dried yeast
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
1 egg

The first pizza was our favourite, the toppings we chose were mozzarella, cheddar, mushrooms, salami, fresh tomato and tomato sauce. We had logistical problems because we don’t have a pizza tray or slice. Or a very good oven. However the result was a roaring success.

It was brilliant. The dough could perhaps have done with being a little more solid, it was a bit soggy in the very centre but I actually quite like that. Pizza is one of the ultimate comfort foods and comforted we were.

Our second one was topped with mozzarella, cheddar. olives stuffed with chilli, fresh anchovies, artichoke, fresh tomato, tomato sauce and rocket (added after this pic was taken). There was a bit much going on I think. It was still yum but would perhaps have benefited from being a bit simpler.

The whole process was very satisfying. Seeing the yeast doing it’s work in the water and becoming all frothy then watching the dough swell and literally double in size, encouraged by the warmth, it’s really very rewarding making your own. Similar to the feeling you get when baking a cake. I’m planning to try again, and perfect the dough, maybe omitting the egg to reduce stodginess. A work in progress.

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