I love making pizza. I usually make a large dough and divide into two and chuck half in the freezer for another day. I let the dough rise , first , then I take whatever I need and then the rest in the freezer. Thaw in the fridge , and then just roll it out and top with toppings.
What kind of pizza do you like? I like mine thin crust,I hate the almost bread like pizza bases. The idea for the toppings came while toying with the idea of trying something a bit spicy.
So I tried pairing a grilled piece of chicken which had been marinated in a yogurt sauce, with similar spices as for tandoori ( use left over tandoori chicken if you like), and paired it with a coriander based chutney sort of sauce. A few green bell pepper strips and mushrooms and I had a lovely new kind of pizza!!.
According to Jamie Oliver in his book , Jamie at home , he says that to get a nice crispy crust its important to get the pizza stone really hot. Because I didnt have a pizza stone, I heated my pizza pan in the highest setting in my oven. Then quickly slide the pizza base in to the pan, top with sauce and toppings and cheese and place in the oven again and cook for 10 minutes. or till the top is nice and golden and cheese has melted.
Pizza Base : 2 1/2 cups flour
pinch of salt
Extra virgin olive oil or regular olive oil about 4-5 tbsps
1 tsp dried active yeast
3/4 cups luke warm water
1/2 tsp sugar
Sift flour into a large bowl along with salt.Make a well in centre and add oil. In a seperate smaller bowl or mug add luke warm water and sugar.
Sprinkle in yeast and give a little mix and leave covered for 10- 15 minutes for it to get frothy.
Pour the mixture into the flour mixture and knead well to get a nice soft dough.Add a tiny bit warm water if it looks too dry. Easier if you dump the whole thing onto your work bench and give a good knead. Oil the mixing bowl and the dough ball with a little olive oil. Cover the bowl with cling film and then a clean tea towel and leave in a warm corner in your kitchen till it doubles in size, about 2 hours.
Chicken : 1 piece of boneless skin lesschicken breast
3 tbsp plain yogurt
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp chilli powder
2 tsp garam masala
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 " ginger, mince
salt and pepper,
Cut a few slashes across the flesh of your chicken piece. Place all the ingrediants in a bowl and mix well and pour over the chicken and massage it in.
Marinate for 1hour at least. Place under the grill and grill ( turn half way to grill the otherside) till chicken is done. Chicken breast piece tends to get tough if you cook it for too long so keep an eye on it. Cool and shred the meat and set aside
Coriander chutney sauce:
1 big bunch of coriander leaves and stems ( about 2 big handfuls )
1 medium tomato, seeds removed and chopped
1/2 an onion, chopped
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1-2 green chillies ( leave them out if making for kids)
juice of 1/2 a lime
Blend everything in a blender or food processor till you get a smooth sauce. Taste and adjust seasoning.
3-4 button mushrooms, thickly sliced
1/2 a green belpper , white pith and seeds removed and sliced
Grated Mozzarella and a little chedder cheese. ( use more of mozzarella and a little of chedder )
Dried chilli flakes
Preheat your oven at Gas mark 6 or 7. Place your pizza pan inside the oven.
While its heating up, roll your pizza dough on a sheet of foil ( make sure you roll it almost the same size as your pan.) .
Take the pizza pan out, carefully place the rolled pizza base inside along with the foil. This way you have less accidents burning your hands by accidently toucing the hot pizza pan.
Quickly spread with coriander sauce, then chicken and bellpeppers and mushrooms.
Sprinkle with cheese, how much depends on the amount of cheese you like on your pizza , I like mine completely covered with it. Lastly sprinkle a little chillie flake on top of the cheese. Pop into oven for about 10 minutes.
Serve hot or cold.