Our Pizza Night Pie.
We love pizza night at our house.
Friday. Oh, glorious, wonderful, perfect day of the week.
Friday, at our house, is pizza night. Now, to be fair, I’d be completely cool with every night being pizza night, but being adults who would rather not get scurvy, we keep pizza night to a once a week showing.
For years I had no idea what I was missing in the whole wide world of pizza. My only experience was with really bad take out or frozen cardboard tasting ‘pizzas’. Then, one fine day when I was 15, I travelled for the first time to New York City, and my life changed. I was introduced to pizza. Real pizza. Napoli style, Roman style, NYC style. I couldn’t get enough.
A few years later when I started cooking, this was high on my list of things I wanted to make at home, that tasted as good (or hopefully better) than any takeout spot in town. A few things I’ve learned:
SUPER hot oven
Baking Steel (or stone)
San Marzano tomato sauce
Can you eat a delicious pizza without these? Yes. For sure. But if you want to go to that next level, these are my suggestions. Also, beer helps.
This is our go pie recipe. I love meatball, bbq chicken, roasted veggie, etc etc etc pizza. But when we want to keep it simple & delicious, we hit this recipe.
Side note – if you find you’re with leftovers…go to bed, wake up, make coffee, fry eggs, top leftover pizza. Best Start.
Our Pizza Night Pie
Makes 2 12-inch pizzas
For the dough:
2 cups white bread flour
1 cup Tipo 00 flour
1 tablespoon dry active yeast
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon sea salt
For the sauce:
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 bunch of basil, finely sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
400g tinned San Marzano tomatoes
Sea Salt & Pepper, for seasoning
2 field tomatoes, sliced
2 balls of buffalo mozzarella
1/2 bunch of basil, diced
Combine your yeast, 1 cup of warm water, and sugar in a bowl, and stir. Let it do it’s magic, until the yeast is active and bubbling (about 8 minutes).
In the base of a stand mixer, combine your flour, yeast mixture, olive oil, salt, and spices, and knead on low. When the dough starts to come together, add your additional 1/2 cup of water, and turn the mixer up a notch or two. Let the dough knead for 10 minutes. Lightly grease a bowl with olive oil, place your dough in and cover with cling film. Let stand for 1 hour until doubled in size.
Pre – heat your oven (fitted with a baking stone) to 550, and let it heat away for 30 minutes.
Heat a saucepan over medium, and pour in your olive oil. When the oil is hot (but not smoking), add your garlic, and fry for 45 seconds. Pour in your tomatoes, and bring the sauce to a simmer. Let the sauce bubble away for 10 minutes. Remove the sauce from the heat, and stir in your basil. Season with salt & pepper. Set aside. (if you want a smoother sauce, run it throw a blender). Extra sauce can be stored in the fridge for later use.
Punch your dough down, and place on a floured surface. Slice the dough in half, and shape both pieces into balls. Roll out one ball to into a 12 inch pie. Top your dough with 3 tablespoons of sauce. Then break apart one mozzarella ball on top of your sauce, placing all over your pizza. Top with a few slices of tomato, and drizzle over some olive oil.
Bake for 6 – 7 minutes, until delicious. Top your pizza with basil, and serve.
Repeat with the second half of dough.