All About Food: 'Mamma Mia that’s good pizza' - Ginger Girl

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Ginger Girl

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All About Food: 'Mamma Mia that’s good pizza' - Ginger Girl

Hello and welcome once again to all about food. Oh how I adore pizza! Enjoy!

Ask Gingergirl

Hello Gingergirl,

I would love to try to make pizza from scratch. Do you have any recipes or hints and tips for the perfect pizza?

Regards, Orla

Hi Orla,

For me, pizza needs a good quality thin base and tasty yet simple toppings – it’s a case of less is more.

I bought a pizza stone (basically a slab of granite) a couple of years ago and I find this really adds to the authentic pizza flavour. Simply pre-heat the stone in the oven at its top temperature before placing your pizza directly onto it. Bellisimo!

Pizza Margherita

300g of strong white flour

1 teaspoon of dried yeast

1 teaspoon of salt

200ml of warm water

1 tablespoon of olive oil

100ml of passata

1 garlic clove, chopped finely

A handful of fresh basil

130g of sliced mozzarella

4 tablespoons of shaved Parmesan

For the base: put the flour, salt and yeast into a large bowl and stir together. Make a well in the centre and pour in the warm water and olive oil. Slowly bring the mixture together (I use a fork for this) in a circular motion until all the flour is mixed into the liquid. At this stage the dough should resemble thick porridge. Turn the mix onto a floured surface and with floured hands knead the dough well for five minutes or until you have a smooth and springy dough. Flour the top of the dough, cover with a tea towel and leave to rest for 45 minutes at room temperature.

To make the sauce: simply lightly fry the garlic, add the passata and basil and simmer for twenty minutes, season to taste and set aside.

Give the dough a quick knead and split into two balls. Roll each ball on a floured surface until they form large circles. The dough needs to be very thin as it will rise once in the oven. If you are not using a pizza stone, place the pizzas onto two floured baking sheets.

When ready to bake: heat your oven to 220ºc. Using the back of a spoon smooth the sauce over each pizza base, add the mozzarella/parmesan and bake for eight to ten minutes until crisp. Serve with a sprinkle of freshly torn basil and a drizzle of olive oil.

Other great pizza toppings include roast peppers and rosemary, ricotta and pine nuts or Parma ham and rocket.

And finally

Five-minute pizza

For those days when you are pushed for time naan pizzas are perfect.

Simply place a naan bread on a baking sheet, spread with some tomato sauce and sprinkle with your favourite toppings. Cook in a pre-heated oven at 220ºc for five minutes. So simple!

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email: helen@gingergirl.ie