Basic pizza

homemade pizza

Serves 8

  • For the dough

  • 800 g strong white bread flour

  • 200 g fine ground semolina flour or strong white bread flour

  • 1 level tablespoon fine sea salt

  • 2x7 g sachets dried yeast

  • 1 tablespoon golden caster sugar

  • 650 ml lukewarm water

  • For the tomato sauce

  • 1 clove garlic

  • 1 small bunch fresh basil

  • olive oil

  • 400 g good-quality tinned plum tomatoes

  • sea salt

  • freshly ground black pepper

  • For the topping

  • 85 g mozzarella

  • extra virgin olive oil

To make the dough:

1. Pile the flour and salt on to a clean surface and make an 18cm well in the centre. Add your yeast and sugar to the lukewarm water, mix up with a fork and leave for a few minutes, then pour into the well.

2. Using a fork and a circular movement, slowly bring in the flour from the inner edge of the well and mix into the water. It will look like thick porridge. Continue to mix, bringing in all the flour. When the dough comes together and becomes too hard to mix with your fork, flour your hands and begin to pat it into a ball.

3. Knead the dough by rolling it backward and forward, using your left hand to stretch the dough toward you and your right hand to push the dough away from you at the same time. Repeat this for 10 minutes, until you have a smooth, springy, soft dough.

4. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and let double in size for about 45 minutes.



To make the sauce:

5. Peel and finely slice the garlic. Pick the basil leaves and discard the stalks. Heat a saucepan on a medium-low heat and add a splash of olive oil and the garlic. Cook gently until the garlic starts to turn golden, then add most of the basil leaves, the tomatoes, and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Cook gently for around 20 minutes, or until smooth, mashing the tomatoes up with a wooden spoon as it cooks.

6. When done, have a little taste, and season again if needed.



To make the pizza:

7. Divide the dough in two. Wrap one half in plastic wrap and freeze for another batch (see Jamie's tips above). With the other half, divide the dough into 4 balls. Flour and cover each ball with plastic wrap, and let it rest for about 15 minutes. This will make it easier to roll it thinly.

8. Take a piece of the dough, dust your surface and the dough with a little flour or semolina, and roll it out into a rough circle about 0.5cm thick. Tear off an appropriately sized piece of tin foil, rub it with olive oil, dust it well with flour or semolina and place the pizza base on top. Continue doing the same with the other pieces and then, if you dust them with a little flour, you can pile them up into a stack, cover them with cling film and put them in the fridge

9. When you're ready to cook them, preheat your oven to 250°C/500°F/gas 9.

10. Put two of the rolled-out dough rounds onto each of two oiled baking sheets. At this stage you can apply your topping. Smear the tomato sauce over the base of your pizzas and spread it out to the edges. Tear over the mozzarella and scatter with the remaining basil leaves. Drizzle with a tiny bit of extra virgin olive oil and add a pinch of salt and pepper. If you can, cook the pizzas on a piece of granite in your conventional oven – if not, do them one by one on pieces of tin foil directly on the bars of the oven shelf, towards the bottom of the oven (If you're going to cook your pizzas on the bars of the oven, make sure they're not too big – otherwise they'll be difficult to manoeuvre). Cook for 7 to 10 minutes, until the pizzas are golden and crispy.



Topping ideas

When it comes to topping a pizza, the only thing you need to remember is: less is more. Keep your combinations simple and don't overload it with toppings so it has a chance to cook through. Try adding your favourite cold meats like Parma ham or salami, or slice up things like mushrooms, olives, courgettes or cooked potatoes and add them. You can also use leftovers – shredded roast pork or chicken would both work well. Have a play and find your favourite combos. Serve with a lovely green salad.



Here are some of my favourite topping ideas:

Mozzarella, anchovies, chilli, capers and parsley

Smoked pancetta, mozzarella, fresh chilli and tomatoes

Egg, prosciutto, artichokes, olives, mozzarella, tomato sauce and basil

Green and red grapes, rosemary, pine nuts and ricotta

Potatoes, mozzarella, rosemary, thyme and tomatoes

Slow-roasted shredded pork with thyme, Taleggio and lemon-dressed rocket

Spicy salami, courgette, basil, tomato and mozzarella

Nutritional Information

Basic pizza

Simply delicious dough and topping

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Trust me, once you see how simple and tasty this pizza dough recipe is you won't want takeaways
Serves 8
1h 20m
Super easy
Print this recipe
Method

This is a really simple method for pizza dough and a great place to start if you've never made your own bread before. If you can find semolina flour, it gives the dough an authentic flavour and texture. But if you can't find it, strong white bread flour will also work.

To make the dough:
1. Pile the flour and salt on to a clean surface and make an 18cm well in the centre. Add your yeast and sugar to the lukewarm water, mix up with a fork and leave for a few minutes, then pour into the well.
2. Using a fork and a circular movement, slowly bring in the flour from the inner edge of the well and mix into the water. It will look like thick porridge. Continue to mix, bringing in all the flour. When the dough comes together and becomes too hard to mix with your fork, flour your hands and begin to pat it into a ball.
3. Knead the dough by rolling it backward and forward, using your left hand to stretch the dough toward you and your right hand to push the dough away from you at the same time. Repeat this for 10 minutes, until you have a smooth, springy, soft dough.
4. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and let double in size for about 45 minutes.

To make the sauce:
5. Peel and finely slice the garlic. Pick the basil leaves and discard the stalks. Heat a saucepan on a medium-low heat and add a splash of olive oil and the garlic. Cook gently until the garlic starts to turn golden, then add most of the basil leaves, the tomatoes, and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Cook gently for around 20 minutes, or until smooth, mashing the tomatoes up with a wooden spoon as it cooks.
6. When done, have a little taste, and season again if needed.

To make the pizza:
7. Divide the dough in two. Wrap one half in plastic wrap and freeze for another batch (see Jamie's tips above). With the other half, divide the dough into 4 balls. Flour and cover each ball with plastic wrap, and let it rest for about 15 minutes. This will make it easier to roll it thinly.
8. Take a piece of the dough, dust your surface and the dough with a little flour or semolina, and roll it out into a rough circle about 0.5cm thick. Tear off an appropriately sized piece of tin foil, rub it with olive oil, dust it well with flour or semolina and place the pizza base on top. Continue doing the same with the other pieces and then, if you dust them with a little flour, you can pile them up into a stack, cover them with cling film and put them in the fridge
9. When you're ready to cook them, preheat your oven to 250°C/500°F/gas 9.
10. Put two of the rolled-out dough rounds onto each of two oiled baking sheets. At this stage you can apply your topping. Smear the tomato sauce over the base of your pizzas and spread it out to the edges. Tear over the mozzarella and scatter with the remaining basil leaves. Drizzle with a tiny bit of extra virgin olive oil and add a pinch of salt and pepper. If you can, cook the pizzas on a piece of granite in your conventional oven – if not, do them one by one on pieces of tin foil directly on the bars of the oven shelf, towards the bottom of the oven (If you're going to cook your pizzas on the bars of the oven, make sure they're not too big – otherwise they'll be difficult to manoeuvre). Cook for 7 to 10 minutes, until the pizzas are golden and crispy.

Topping ideas
When it comes to topping a pizza, the only thing you need to remember is: less is more. Keep your combinations simple and don't overload it with toppings so it has a chance to cook through. Try adding your favourite cold meats like Parma ham or salami, or slice up things like mushrooms, olives, courgettes or cooked potatoes and add them. You can also use leftovers – shredded roast pork or chicken would both work well. Have a play and find your favourite combos. Serve with a lovely green salad.

Here are some of my favourite topping ideas:
Mozzarella, anchovies, chilli, capers and parsley
Smoked pancetta, mozzarella, fresh chilli and tomatoes
Egg, prosciutto, artichokes, olives, mozzarella, tomato sauce and basil
Green and red grapes, rosemary, pine nuts and ricotta
Potatoes, mozzarella, rosemary, thyme and tomatoes
Slow-roasted shredded pork with thyme, Taleggio and lemon-dressed rocket
Spicy salami, courgette, basil, tomato and mozzarella

Whether it's delicious vegetarian or vegan recipes you're after, or ideas for gluten or dairy-free dishes, you'll find plenty here to inspire you. For more info on how we classify our lifestyle recipes please read our special diets fact sheet, or or for more information on how to plan your meals please see our special diets guidance.

Nutritional Information Amount per serving:

Calories

Calories are just a unit of energy. If you eat more than you use you can gain weight, or lose it if you don't eat enough. How much you need depends on your weight, gender and how active you are, but it's around 2,000 a day.

Carbs

Carbs are a great source of energy and, excluding foods such as potatoes, are made from grains - like bread, pasta and cereal. We all need carbs, but try to make them all wholegrain by sticking to brown bread, rice and pasta - they are much more nutritious.

Sugar

We all deserve a treat sometimes, but try to limit your sugar intake. Most of your sugar should come from raw fruit and milk, because they give us lots of nutrients too. Always check food labels so you know how much sugar you're eating.

Fat

We all need to eat a small amount of fat because it protects our organs and helps us grow. But we need to be careful about how much fat we eat and what kinds of fat, because in higher levels it's associated with weight gain, diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

Saturates

Saturated or "bad fats" are in beef, pork, chicken skin, butter, cream and cheese. Too much can be bad for our heart and cholesterol levels, but unsaturated or "good fats" in fish, nuts, avocados and some oils can help keep our hearts healthy if eaten in moderation.

Protein

Protein helps our muscles to grow and repair, as well as providing you with essential amino acids. When it comes to protein, try to eat leaner sources such as chicken and fish or non-meat sources such as eggs, dairy, beans, nuts, seeds, tofu and pulses.
  • Calories 484
    24%
  • Carbs 89.9g
    35%
  • Sugar 4.7g 5%
  • Fat 4.5g 6%
  • Saturates 1.7g 9%
  • Protein 18.8g 42%
Of an adult's reference intake

BUYING SUSTAINABLY SOURCED FISH

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Buying sustainably sourced fish means buying fish that has been caught without endangering the levels of fish stocks and with the protection of the environment in mind. Wild fish caught in areas where stocks are plentiful are sustainably sourced, as are farmed fish that are reared on farms proven to cause no harm to surrounding seas and shores.

When buying either wild or farmed fish, ask whether it is sustainably sourced. If you're unable to obtain this information, don't be afraid to shop elsewhere – only by shopping sustainably can we be sure that the fantastic selection of fish we enjoy today will be around for future generations.

For further information about sustainably sourced fish, please refer to the useful links below:

Marine Stewardship Council
http://www.msc.org/

Fish Online
http://www.fishonline.org

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  • For the dough

  • 800 g strong white bread flour

  • 200 g fine ground semolina flour or strong white bread flour

  • 1 level tablespoon fine sea salt

  • 2x7 g sachets dried yeast

  • 1 tablespoon golden caster sugar

  • 650 ml lukewarm water

  • For the tomato sauce

  • 1 clove garlic

  • 1 small bunch fresh basil

  • olive oil

  • 400 g good-quality tinned plum tomatoes

  • sea salt

  • freshly ground black pepper

  • For the topping

  • 85 g mozzarella

  • extra virgin olive oil