I know that February is a short month but it has felt to me like AGES since I was paid. So I’ve been trying to stay out of the shops and just live on the contents of our fridge, freezer and cupboards – none of which have seen much re-stocking recently.
Last night I made pizza which much be one of the cheapest dinners in the world. I loosely used the Jamie’s Italy recipe for the pizza dough, but halved the quantities – although this still makes enough for 3 big pizzas – probably enough for 4-6 people:
400g strong white bread flour
100g semolina flour
Teaspoon of dried yeast
Half pint of lukewarm water
I poured all the dried ingredients into a large mixing bowl and added the water. I combined the ingredients together with a fork until it looked doughy and then turned it out and kneaded it for about 10 minutes. When it was smooth I popped it into a floured bowl and covered it with cling-film for a couple of hours until it had puffed up.
While the dough was rising I put a baking sheet into the oven at the highest heat. I then made the sauce:
About 25/30 cherry tomatoes (I’d bough them the previous week on special offer at Tesco because they were going a little soft)
3 gloves garlic
Pinch of dried oregano
Big bunch basil
Good peppery olive oil
Chunk of parmesan
Ball of mozzarella broken into pieces
I thinly sliced the garlic gloves and poached them in a tablespoon of good olive oil on a low heat for a couple of minutes. I halved the tomatoes and threw them into the saucepan with the garlic and left them to cook down for half an hour. When the sauce was ready I turned the heat off, I thinly shredded most of the basil and stirred it through the sauce.
When the dough had risen I took it out and put it on a floured worktop and cut it into 3 chunky pieces and rolled each one out into a shape that would fit my baking sheet. I took the hot baking sheet out of the oven, sprinkled it with Semolina Flour and placed the dough on top. I spread a big spoonful of sauce onto the dough and topped it with some pieces of mozzarella, a grating of parmesan and a drizzle of olive oil and put it into the oven, again, at the highest heat. Keep and eye on it as it can go from perfect to black in a few seconds but it should take 7-10 minutes. You should have enough here for 3 baking-sheet sized pizzas – so repeat until finished – I’ve put my leftover pizza dough in the freezer for another day.
I threw a couple of whole basil leaves on top of the pizza and then we ate them with our fingers, standing up in the kitchen while we ranted at Question Time on the TV – not dignified but delicious nonetheless!