Cooking School

Your own pizzeria

By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen

Pizza Margherita <br /> Photography by Matthew Kimura Author: Canadian Living Credits: Pizza Margherita <br /> Photography by Matthew Kimura

Cooking School

Your own pizzeria

By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen

Don't miss our recipe for Shortcut Supper Pizza!

Making your own pizza is easy. You can do it the authentic way, or try some of the ready-in-minutes pizzas using bought pizza dough, already baked pizza rounds, tortillas or pita breads.

Keep these items on hand in the fridge, freezer and cupboard and you're almost all the way there to a homemade pizza.

Pizza ingredients for the freezer
• Ready-made pizza bases, frozen pizza dough, English muffins, tortillas (try the spinach or salsa-flavored colored tortillas), pita bread or flatbreads.
• Pesto and grated cheeses.

Pizza ingredients for the refrigerator
• Parmesan cheese, mozzarella and other stringy cheeses such as provolone and Monterey Jack plus any other cheeses you like such as Havarti, Gouda, Cheddar, herbed cream cheese or fontina.
• Pepperoni or any dried salami, ham or pastrami, vegetarian pepperoni and firm tofu.
• Sweet green and red peppers, mushrooms, green and red onions, zucchini and broccoli.
• Active dry yeast.

Pizza ingredients for the cupboard or pantry
• All-purpose flour, olive oil, salt, pasta or pizza sauces, dried oregano, dried basil, dried Italian herb mix, fresh garlic cloves.
• Jars of olives and marinated artichoke hearts.
• Cans of mushrooms, tuna, anchovies (yes, anchovies - try them and we know you'll like thern!), chili, red kidney beans, tomatoes and red peppers.
• Keep fresh tomatoes handy on the counter, never in the fridge.

Page 1 of 3 -- Learn how to make pizza dough from scratch on page 2

How to make pizza dough from scratch

Try making your own pizza dough. It's fun, and much less expensive than ready-made pizza bases or store-bought frozen pizza dough.

Pizza dough in 10 easy steps:

1. Into a large bowl, measure 1-1/2 cups (375 mL) all-purpose flour. With wooden spoon, mix in 1 tsp (5 mL) quick-rising (instant) dry yeast and 1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt.

2. Pour 1/2 cup (125 mL) hand-hot tap water into liquid measuring cup; add 1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil or canola oil. Pour over flour mixture and stir until all dry ingredients are moistened and dough looks shaggy.

3. Dust hands with flour and gather dough into ball. Dust counter generously with flour; dump dough on counter.

4. Folding top half of dough over bottom half, push hard against double layer of dough with heels of your hands, then give dough a quarter turn.

5. Repeat the folding, pushing and turning for about 8 minutes or until dough is smooth, springy and stretchy like an elastic band.

6. Keep hands and counter lightly dusted with flour if dough is sticky (but the trick is not to add too much flour). As you knead, the flour absorbs moisture and dough becomes smooth.

7. Brush dough very lightly with olive oil or canola oil and place on counter; cover with bowl and let rise for about 45 minutes or until doubled in size.

8. Uncover and gently stretch dough (or roll with rolling pin) to a circle about 12 inches (30 cm) wide. Dust 12-inch (30 cm) pizza pan with cornmeal and place dough over top.

9. Starting at center, gently press dough to fill pan and form a little raised rim. If dough becomes too stretchy, let it rest for a few minutes before continuing.

10. Cooking instructions: Spread pizza base with sauce and cover with toppings. Bake in bottom third of 500F (260C) oven for 10 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and crust is golden and slightly puffed.

Makes one 12-inch (30 cm) pizza base. Double ingredients for 2 bases.

Page 2 of 3 -- Discover how easy it is to make a quick after-school pizza on page 3

Personal pizza - pronto!

Satisfy after-school and post-game hunger pangs with an instant pizza.

• Place tortillas, whole pita breads or English muffins on baking sheet for the oven or toaster oven.

• Spread with pasta or pizza sauce and sprinkle with dried basil or oregano.

• Add whatever you find in the fridge that tickles your fancy - such as smoked ham, pastrami, sliced wieners, leftover chicken, pepperoni, green peppers, mushrooms, cubed tofu, kidney beans.

• Top with a good sprinkle of mozzarella, plus Parmesan if you like. Broil just until topping is bubbling and edges are crisp.

Page 3 of 3

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Cooking School

Your own pizzeria