Cook it up!

I love baking and one of my favorite things to make is pizza. So i thought i’d write down a recipe i stick to, to make the perfect pizza time after time.

The Classic Margherita

This traditional Italian pizza is simple and delicious. This recipe makes 2 pizzas, perfect for sharing and will take 1hr and 15 mins to prepare and cook. It’s well worth the wait! This recipe shows you how to make a classic pizza base from scratch

Ingredients

For the base

  • 200g strong white flour plus extra for dusting
  • 7g fast-action dried yeast
  • Pinch of salt
  • 140ml water, warm
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil plus extra for brushing

For the topping

  • 200g passata or half a tin of chopped tomatoes
  • mozzarella hand torn into chunks
  • Parmesan block
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 fresh basil leaves
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Prepare 2 baking trays by pouring 1 tablespoon of oil on each tray and spreading it with your fingers. Brush the inside of a large bowl with oil also.
  2. To prepare the dough, put the flour, yeast and salt into a large bowl, make a well in the centre and pour in the water with 1 tablespoon of oil. Use a wooden spoon to mix everything together to create a wet dough.
  3. Turn out the dough onto a well-floured surface and work it with your hands for about 5 minutes until smooth and elastic. Place in the oiled bowl, brush the top with oil and cover with clingfilm. Leave to rest at room temperature for 1 hour.
  4. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas Mark 6.
  5. Once rested, turn out the dough onto a well-floured surface and divide it into 2 equal halves. Use your hands to push each one out from the center, to create 2 round discs about 25cm in diameter. Place the pizza bases on the oiled baking trays.
  6. Spread the passata or chopped tomatoes evenly over the top of the bases using the back of a tablespoon. Season with salt and pepper.
  7. Divide the mozzarella between the 2 pizzas and drizzle each one with 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil.
  8. Cook in the middle of the oven for 12 minutes until golden brown. Two minutes before the end of the cooking, scatter over the basil and continue to cook.
  9. put the pizzas on to plates ready to serve and thinly grate over a small amount of Parmesan
  10. Serve hot and enjoy.