Thursday 7 August 2008

If At First You Don't Suceed, Try and Try Again

Pizza dough was the first dough / bread I've made. I was given the recipe by Josh, from Cooking The Books which I have posted about before, but already I'm improving. The first few times I made it, I couldn't understand why I kept getting a really wet dough. So wet in fact that I couldn't do anything with it, and just had to add more flour to make it workable. This happened twice and it was infuriating.

It took me a while, but I realised that I was using 160gr of flour to 120gr of water. The recipe states 180gr flour. Someone wasn't paying attention in class. Still, my pizzas weren't quite right. The dough was either too wet or too tooth-breakingly crunchy. I would simmer down a tin of tomatoes with garlic and oregano, and this often had a slight petrol taste, from the garlic.

Thankfully I persisted. Mixing up the dough first thing in the morning and then covering in cling film and bunging in the fridge means that I don't have to wait an hour for it to rise in the evening. I simply take it out of the fridge to bring to room temperature, knead for about 3 or 4 mins and then roll it out. Also, instead of simmering down a tin of tomatoes with various fillings, I now just use tinned peeled plum tomatoes. No juice, just the whole tomatoes crushed and spread across the base. Thinly sliced garlic goes on next, then anchovies, capers and olives, basil leaves and topped with mozzerella. This gets baked at the top of the oven on full blast for about 15 - 20 mins, finishing off with 5 mins under the grill. I usually top it with plain rocket for a bit of greenery.

I made this for myself and my housemate, and it was worth the wait in getting it right. She declared it the best she's ever had, and I was inclined to agree. The recipe I use for the dough, for two people, is here.


Anonymous said...

We've been experimenting with our pizza dough recipe lately too and been having much better results.

I tend to use roasted cherry tomatoes for the "sauce" now. We usually have some left over and when the oven is on I just throw those in and roast them. They last for a while in the fridge and are great on pizza, they work well in pasta dishes too.

Carlito86 said...

Ooh this looks lovely Hollow Legs!