October 30, 2017

Who doesn’t love a pizza? This Italian food is undoubtedly one of the most popular fast food from the west to make a place in Indian homes and hearts too. Imagine ordering  pizza online, choosing those toppings while you salivate secretly and then count the minutes, as you wait for the delivery boy to arrive. And finally, savouring that moment when the crispy, triangle crust topped with your favourite meat and veggies makes it to your mouth and your mind goes “mmm”. What can possibly be better than this? Well, making it from scratch at home and hearing others go “mmm” after that first bite! If you agree, we tell you the secrets to making the perfect pizza at home.

1. Making The Perfect Dough

We say, ditch the store-bought pizza base and make it from scratch. We tell you all the tips and tricks to get that perfect crust.

gourmet pizzas

Ingredients

  • 3 and 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons of sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 and 1/2 cups of water

Mix the dry ingredients in one bowl and stir, while you add the water. Form a dough and wrap it with a plastic sheet. Keep it in a clean, dry and cool place for 18 hours ( yes you heard it right!). By that time, the dough will become almost double its size.

Once it is ready, you will see tiny bubbles have formed on its surface. Take it out to a surface where you mean to work on it. Make sure the top has flour spread on it. Divide it into 3 equal portions and turn them into a ball. Keep them aside for an hour.

2. Cooking the Sauce

Again, forget the sauce bought from  the store. Make it yourself. After all, doing everything at home will give you bragging rights as well.

gourmet pizzas

Ingredients

  • 700 gm of  boiled peeled tomato
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • Red pepper flakes

Smash the boiled tomatoes and strain them. Add the other ingredients to the tomato and put them in a blender. Add sugar and salt to taste.

3. Giving Shape  to your Dough

This is the tricky part. Do not use the rolling pin to roll your dough. It will make your pizza crust hard and thick. Try your hands instead. Gently pull and stretch. If the dough is not co-operating, it means it is too cold. Let it sit for 15 minutes and try again.  Put some flour on your hand and take the pizza ball. Using your fingers, try to stretch it starting from the middle. Without being too rough, try to make it flat like a disk. Don’t worry about the shape, it does not have to be a perfect circle. It can be square, oval, or shaped like the map of Africa, all you want for it is to taste good!

4. Top it with Love

After all didn’t Julia Child say  I think careful cooking is love, don’t you? The loveliest thing you can cook for someone who’s close to you is about as nice a valentine as you can give.” So time for those amazing toppings. More is less – is the motto here. So you have to be careful about the amount you are putting on your pizza. A few things to remember:

  • Too much sauce or cheese will make your dough soggy.
  • If you are adding a lot of mozzarella, bake it partially before adding the toppings.
  • While choosing toppings, remember to club salty and sweet, bitter and fatty. Like BBQ chicken red onions and cilantro.

5. The Final Bake

Crank up the heat when baking pizza. It will need at least 500 degrees Fahrenheit to be done perfectly. Once you put the pizza on the sheet. Turn on the broiler. This will make the oven extra hot. Once brown spots start showing on the pizza surface, take it out. will take only about 4-5 minutes. There! Your home-made gourmet pizza is all done. Now all you need is for your friends or family to come and taste it.

gourmet pizzas