Ultimate Pizza Dough

or ‘the boys make pizza’

Ultimate Pizza Dough

450g strong white plain flour
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp onion salt
2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp sunflower oil
1 ½ tsp dried active yeast

300ml warm water

Makes two medium pizza bases or garlic bread.

Okay so you can make it by hand,  I’m not going to, that’s what the mixer/breadmaker is for surely?  Plus four boys nipping at my heels to make pizza (yes I know I only have three boys, I decided to borrow my nephew for the afternoon too).  I have two secret ingredients in my pizza dough.  Okay they’re not secret and they’re not exciting either but they are good!

So in it goes, flour first, yeast at the opposite side to the salt and sugar.  Chuck the oil in on top.

Prepare the water – what does warm mean?  Well, I go with 1/3rd of the water straight from the hot kettle and then the rest filled up from the cold tap.  That’s warm.

In it goes, on goes the machine.  If it’s a bread maker then you want it on the dough setting and let it do it’s thing, if it’s a stand mixer work the speed up slowly to combine the dough to a speed of about 6, then let it mix for five minutes. After the five minutes turn the mixer off and let the dough rest for five minutes.  Put the timer on and read a magazine – oh yes right four little boys, no magazine reading for me.

After the resting time put the mixer on again for another five minutes.
Once the dough is mixed transfer it into a lightly greased bowl and cover with clingfilm.  Bob it in a warm draught free spot for an hour or until doubled in size.

After proving, tip it out onto your worksurface, just a teeny tiny bit of flour to stop it sticking.

Knock the air out of the dough using your fists.  Split the dough in half and there you have your pizza dough. Shape each into circles.

I can’t follow my own instructions, okay I can, I’m just not very good at the perfect circle thingy – the boys are having square with rounded corner pizzas.
There’s loads you can do to this dough.
Turn it into garlic bread, cheesy garlic bread, BBQ garlic bread (my fave), let the boys make pizza for tea….

For garlic bread chop 3 cloves of garlic and mash into 50g softened butter.

Shape each portion of dough and place on a lightly floured baking tray.
Dimple all over with your fingertips.

Spread each with half of the garlic butter and bake in the oven at 180c Fan/200c/ Gas Mark 5 for 8-10 minutes.  What do you mean you don’t want two?  Bake it, let it cool and then wrap it well and put it in the freezer for next time.

Like a bit of cheese?  Then just as regular garlic bread and then lashings of grated cheese.

For the BBQ one just slather it in BBQ sauce after spreading with the butter.  You can use the HP BBQ sauce or a marinade type sauce, it mellows beautifully whilst baking in the oven and takes away the strong vinegary taste.
Here’s the boys making pizza – it involves grabbing everything from the fridge and the cupboards they can get their hands on.

This boy is always happy making pizza and actually showed some restraint with his toppings (I think because of the camera)  He normally makes pizza mountains that will take three days to cook.

It’s serious stuff this pizza making!

This boy doesn’t make pizza with us very often, he’s too old (and cool).  He’s learnt too well to experiment with food and is constructing a stuffed crust type pizza.

This boy loves homemade pizza,  he joined in by banging the spoon… and eating the sweetcorn.

This boy doesn’t like having his photo taken…he does like pizza.

Happy Boys!

Ultimate Pizza Dough
So now I’ve probably bored you with my family snaps why not head off and make some pizza?

Oh and the stuffed crust pizza?  It turned out more like a pizza pie but still very lovely!

Ultimate Pizza Dough

Ruth Clemens, Baker Extraordinaire
Finalist on BBC2 The Great British Bake Off 2010

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