02 November 2011

when the moon hits your eye, like a big pizza pie...

I've made pizza bases before. I've blogged about making pizza bases before. Heck, I've already blogged the exact recipe for this pizza base before. But this weekend, the pizza-making took on a whole new dimension, so much so that re-bloggery was imperative. The yeast was spongey like sea foam, the dough more than doubled in size and had the elastic quality that every pizza maker strives for.

As I said, this recipe ain't new, but for the first time in my pizza-making career, the dough just seemed to do absolutely everything it was supposed to. All the pizzas in the past have been wicked, but this one was sublime. Nir-freaking-vana my friends. I'd like to think it was me and my general awesomeness that made the difference, but I think it was more the pizza-making partnership with my sous chef KB (said rather tongue and cheek, given it was he who prepared the frothy yeasty goodness which forms the foundation of a winning dough).

From the moment I set eyes (in complete astonishment, I'd never seen yeast activate like this before) on the mixing bowl, I knew this was the dough for visual documentation. So, without further bleeting on, here follows a pictorial guide to pizza greatness. Thanks to both KB and Mac, the dog who tried to help, by licking up the excess flour.

1 and 1/2 cups warm water
7 g active dry yeast
1 tsp sugar (or thereabouts)
500 g flour
1 tsp salt
3 tbsp olive oil
extra olive oil, for brushing crusts
parmesan, for crusts (optional)
tomato paste / satay paste (or others, such as BBQ sauce etc)

The step-by-step method can be found at the link at the beginning of this entry. What follows is a pictorial of how the pizza-making process is done. Oh, and to get your frothy yeast into super-risen dough - pour the yeast mix into the flour/salt/oil in a food processor. Mix until it forms a ball and pulls away from the sides. Return to well-oiled bowl, cover with damp teatowel and place somewhere warm for 45 minutes. I preheat the oven a little, then turn it off. No drafts, works well. Buon appetito!!!

NB: It's a good idea to get the toppings all ready to go while the dough is rising. Once you've got your dough flattened into bases, you want to top them asap, 'cause otherwise the dough will start to rise again and you could end up with fluffy, thick pizzas, instead of thin, pizzary goodness. Enjoy!!