Pizza Margherita

Prep time: 2 hours 40 min 
Cook time: 20 min
Total time: 3 hours
Yield: 2/3 servings (2, 16 inch diameter Pizzas)

Ingredients
  • 1 Pizza Dough
  • 12 oz water
  • 1 tablespoon Oil
  • 16 oz Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • 3 leaves Basil
To prepare the dough please use my recipe clicking here. Keep in mind that the dough needs at least two hours to rise, so if you decide to make Pizza for dinner you have to plan in advance. I usually prepare the dough right after lunch and let it rest throughout the afternoon. Or you can buy ready made dough.
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven at 400°F. You should have your dough all risen and ready to rock. Very well, take it out of its bowl, or pack, and knead it until you have a smooth ball. Sprinkle the surface you’re working on with flour.
  2. Start kneading the dough in a flatter round form squishing it with your hands and finger. When it’s flat enough spread it with a rolling pin. I would love to be able to spread the dough by making it fly above my head as they do in Italy, but for us mortals rolling pin it is. Roll until you reach your desired thickness (0.2-0.4 inches ideally).
  3. Place the flattened dough on a pizza pan. This is key, do this before you add the toppings or it will end in tragedy. When I forget and have to move the already garnished Pizza it’s hell. I line the pan with parchment paper because it happened before that even if the pan was nonstick the pizza did stick. 
  4. If the dough is larger than the pan you can cut the borders with a knife and reuse the scraps.
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  5. Mix the tomato puree with the oil and salt and spread it on the raw pizza with a spoon.
  6. Depending on the mozzarella you’re using and the dough thickness you chose you’ll have to do things differently. I suggest using fresh mozzarella, if you only find dried mozzarella it’s fine.
    Dried mozzarella/Thick dough: dried mozzarella tends to cook and burn more quickly, so before you add it on top i suggest you precook the tomato garnished dough for about 7/10 minutes, then take it out of the oven add the mozzarella sprinkling it evenly on top and cook for another 5/10 minutes. At the same time a thick dough requires more time so a 5 minutes precook (even if using fresh mozzarella) is good.
    Fresh mozzarella: mince it in the food processor and sprinkle it in on top of the tomato, cook the pizza for 15/20 minutes. Check for when the mozzarella becomes golden. I like it crispier so I leave it a bit longer, but you can adjust the cooking to your preferences. Do the first check 10 minutes in.
  7. I prefer to cook one pizza first and then the other because this way they don’t “shadow” each other in the oven. When the first pizza is in, I repeat everything for the second one starting on step one. I cook pizza number two while we eat pizza number one.
  8. Before serving the pizza I like to add some leaves of fresh basil.
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Pizza Margherita by Camilla Isley August-03-2015

Pizza and Bread Dough

Prep time: 3 hours
Yield: 2 servings

Ingredients
  • 4.5 cups White Flour
  • 12 oz Water
  • 1 tablespoon Oil
  • 1 bag Dryed Yeast
  • 1 pinch Salt
This dough is the base for making Pizza and traditional Italian Bread
Instructions
  1. Prepare all your ingredients. Put the flour in a big bowl, sprinkle with a pinch of salt, and dig a hole in the center (I use a fork.)
  2. Fill a measuring cup with 350 / 400 ml (11oz) of lukewarm water, add the yeast, and mix until the yeast is properly dissolved. Add the oil and mix again.
  3. Slowly pour the liquid on the flour while mixing energetically with the fork. When you have poured all the liquid keep mixing until it becomes too hard and then knead the dough manually, first inside the bowl and then on a flat surface until you have a uniform ball. You may have to adjust the water quantity, I usually find it easier if I am a bit more generous with it, as a soft dough leavens better and is easier to knead. (If you end up adding too much water add another bit of flour.)
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  4. Place the ball of dough back into the bowl, cover it with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap, and set it to rest in a protected space. Ideally inside the oven or microwave.
  5. Let the dough rise for two hours at the very minimum. You can leave it longer if you want, even as long as twenty-four hours.
  6. Remove the dough from its resting place, it should have doubled in size, knead it until it’s smooth again and you’re ready to move on to your recipe.
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Pizza and Bread Dough by Camilla Isley August-03-2015