You can make the pizza dough up to 12 hours before you want to make it and let it rise slowly in the fridge. When you’re ready to cook, punch the dough down to get rid of any air, then knead and roll it out into shape. The less topping you add, the crisper the pizza. Make sure the oven has reached the right temperature – the dough needs a blast of heat to set the crust.
350 g strong white bread flour
1 x 7 g sachet (two teaspoons) dried yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons olive oil
Place the flour, yeast, sugar and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre, add oil and 210ml of just warm water and mix until a firm dough forms. Knead on a lightly floured surface for 5–7 minutes, or until smooth and elastic. Alternatively, you can put all the ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat, using a dough hook for about 7 minutes, then knead for a minute or two.
Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and stand in a warm place for 1–11/2 hours, or until the dough has doubled in size.
Punch down the dough to release the air, divide into two or three equal portions and either roll out or stretch to a thickness of about 4 mm.
Mozzarella and tomato pizza
cornmeal or polenta, for sprinkling
1/2 quantity pizza dough
EV olive oil
1 clove garlic, chopped
250g mozzarella, sliced or torn into pieces
100g cherry tomatoes, halved
rocket or basil leaves
Preheat the oven to 220°C (Gas Mark 7). Lightly oil a metal pizza tray and sprinkle with a little cornmeal. Roll out or stretch the dough to a thickness of 4 mm and place on the tray.
Brush the pizza dough with olive oil and sprinkle with chopped garlic. Scatter the mozzarella and cherry tomatoes over the top and season well. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until crisp. Top with a handful of lightly dressed salad leaves or basil leaves and serve immediately. Makes 1