Perfect Pizza Dough & Sauce

I have been making this pizza dough for a number of years now, it has taken a few tweaks here and there before reaching ‘perfection’ but it was well worth the effort!! This recipe makes six pizzas and freezes really well for up to three months.

Your Saturday night takeaway pizza will be a thing of the past when you try this recipe. Homemade pizza is much cheaper, healthier and definitely tastier!

My top tips:

* Use a metal pizza tray rather than a pizza stone.

* Leave the pizza tray in the oven whilst pre heating.

* Place the pizza base in the oven for 4 minutes before adding any toppings- this prevents a ‘soggy bottom’.

* Tesco flour and yeast work better than any other brand – don’t ask me why but I have tried them all and Tesco was consistently better every time.

* Use grated mozzarella rather than balls as they make the base soggy, even if drained.

* If you have dough left over (which you will unless making six pizzas) portion up and wrap really well in cling film – any air in there and the dough spoils quite quickly. Store in the fridge and use within a week or the freezer and use within three months.

 

Pizza Sauce

 

Add a tin of good quality chopped tomatoes to a blender along with four tablespoons of tomato purée, a handful of fresh basil, a teaspoon of sugar and a tablespoon of dried mixed herbs. Blitz together for 30 seconds and bish bash bosh- pizza sauce! You can freeze any leftovers for up to three months.

 

Pizza Dough Ingredients

* 500g strong white flour

* 300ml semi skimmed milk

* 1 x sachet fast action dried yeast

Method

* Sieve flour into mixing bowl.

* Heat milk in a jug for 1 minute 30 seconds (yes it’s an exact science) in the microwave then whisk in the yeast until fully dissolved.

* Combine milk with flour and mix until it forms a dough; I use the paddle attachment on my Kitchen Aid to do this but you can do it using a good old fashioned wooden spoon and plenty of elbow grease.

* When you are happy with your dough, knead for 6 minutes starting at a low speed and working your way up at one minute intervals. If kneading by hand, seven minutes will be enough.

* Drizzle a large metal mixing bowl (again, don’t ask why but metal works best) with extra virgin olive oil, place your dough in and cover with cling film (make sure its air tight).

* Leave in a room which isn’t too cold for two hours minimum to prove.

* If you like a pizza prone to form ‘bubbles’, don’t knock the air out before rolling. A piece of dough slightly bigger than a tennis ball makes a 10″ pizza. Roll thinly for the perfect crispy base.

* Bake for 4 minutes at 180c before adding toppings.

* Add pizza sauce, cheese and toppings and cook for approximately 10 minutes – every oven will vary so keep a close eye, because the dough is so thin it can go from perfect cooked to ruined in a matter of seconds.

Enjoy!

Lucy x

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