I used to make my pizza dough from scratch, leaving it to raise in a warm place, but I now use my breadmaker for the task, setting it for 2 hours and coming back to fresh dough. We eat pizza regularly at our place, simply because you can put anything on top of it and it's a great way to feed (and fill) teenage boys (and their mates). I always buy plain flour in 5kg lots and I keep my dried yeast in the freezer as it extends the shelf life. I also roll out my pizza dough into bases, top with tomato paste or pasta sauce, cook until firm, and cool, wrap and freeze. Just another one of my pre-preparation methods that saves me both time and money in the long run.
3 cups plain flour
300ml warm water
1 tablespoon dry yeast
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons olive oil
Dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water and leave to stand for 5 minutes or until frothy. Sift flour and salt together into a large mixing bowl. Add water and yeast mix, and olive oil to the flour. Mix well until it forms a ball.
Tip dough onto a floured board or bench and knead for 10 minutes until dough becomes soft and pliable. Place into a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a damp cloth. Put in warm area to rise for about an hour and a half. When dough has doubled in size, knead again on a floured surface for a few minutes. Divide dough ball into two and with a rolling pin, roll out dough to fit two trays. Place dough on lightly oiled trays. Cover with tomato paste or tomato pasta sauce.
Cook in a preheated oven (180°C ) for 15 minutes or until lightly golden.
Top with extra tomato paste or sauce and your choice of ingredients. (See below for suggestions). Bake for a further 20 minutes until cheese is melted and golden brown. Stand 5 minutes before slicing.
Satay Chicken Pizza
1 onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 small red capsicum, finely diced
1 carrot, peeled and grated
500g chicken thigh fillets, diced
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 cup satay sauce
1 teaspoon bi-carb soda
Sauté onion and garlic until tender. Add capsicum and carrot and sauté further 1 minute. Add chicken and brown through. Stir through satay sauce, carb soda and sesame seeds. Spread thinly on top of pizza. top with a thin layer of grated cheese. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden.
Pumpkin, Spinach, Leek and Fetta
50g baby spinach leaves
100g crumbled feta
1 leek, sautéed in 30g butter
2 cups roasted or steamed pumpkin
Layer leek, spinach leaves, feta and pumpkin on top of pizza base (already topped with pasta sauce/tomato paste). top with grated cheddar cheese, bake until golden brown.
Gluten free variations: click here for gluten free pizza base suggestions.
Life for us has been all about survival on a shoestring budget. I cook from scratch and don't buy prepackaged mixes of anything. I've learnt how to live on very basic (and cheap) staples. I've raised happy and healthy kids and I believe that good food is central to a good life!
The Economics of Eating App is now available for purchase!
I have an unpublished cookbook manuscript that lives on my kitchen bench. This is the collection that I have fed my family from for many years, all made from a core list of practical and economical ingredients. The manuscript is splattered with butter, flour and milk from daily use. It moves between the kitchen and the office as I edit and test-kitchen the recipes.