Classic Cheese Pizza

cheese pizza Pizza is a popular dish of Neapolitan origin, made with an oven-baked, flat, generally round bread, covered with tomato-based sauce and cheese. Toppings are added according to region, culture, or personal preference.

The bottom base of the pizza (crust) vary widely, sometimes thin as in hand-tossed pizza or thick as in pan pizza. It is traditionally plain, but may also be seasoned with butter, garlic, or herbs, or stuffed with cheese.

In restaurants, pizzas are baked in varioys types of ovens, like electric deck oven and wood / coal-fired brick oven. While making pizza at home, it can be baked on a pizza stone (a piece of ceramic / earthenware to evenly distribute the heat) in a regular oven. Another option is grilled pizza, where the crust is baked directly on a barbecue grill. Here is the recipe for classic cheese pizza.

Pizza Dough

  • flour (sifted) 3 ¼ cups
  • warm water (110-120 degrees F): 1 1/4 cups
  • active dry yeast: 1 packet
  • sugar: 1 ¼ tbsp
  • salt: ½ tsp
  • olive oil / butter flavoured oil: 2 tbsp

Toppings:

  • Tomato sauce: 4-6 tbsp
  • Mozzarella cheese (shredded / grated): 6 tbsp
  • Parmesan cheese (grated): 1 tbsp
  • Olive oil: 2 tbsp
  • Dried Oregano seasoning (crumbled) (to taste)
  • Red chili flakes (to taste)

Procedure:

To make the dough:

  1. Dissolve yeast and sugar in water. Allow to sit for 8-10 minutes (builds a good froth, so make sure this is in a 2 cup or larger container, glass is best as it holds the heat nicely).
  2. In a bowl, mix the sifted flour and salt. Slowly add the yeast water with a olive oil / butter flavoured oil.
  3. Mix thoroughly (add flour / olive oil if required) and knead thoroughly for about 6-8 minutes to make a smooth, springy dough (Remember that the dough should be slightly sticky to the firm touch).
  4. Remove dough from bowl and place in an airtight bag. Do not seal bag, but leave open in a nearly closed drape (enough to allow gasses from yeast to escape). Set in a warm place for at lest for 1 hour & 15-20 minutes. (This is very crucial & essential otherwise the dough will not rise properly and will result in a tough, unpleasant dough).

Rolling out the dough:

  1. Take the dough on to a flat surface, dust it with little flour, roll it flat (size measurement: you can rollout to cover a 14 inch pan for thicker crust / 16 inch pan for thinner crust).
  2. Permeate crust with fork over the entire dough base (sp that the pizza crust do not bubble).
  3. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise an additional 15-20 minutes. Repeat permeation with fork only slightly.

Toppings & baking:

  1. Grease a baking sheet and lay the rolled dough.
  2. Pour tomato sauce on the pizza base and spread it evenly with the back of a spoon.
  3. Sprinkle mozzarella and parmesan. cheese. Very carefully rribble olive oil over the pizza and bake it on the lowest shelf or the floor of the oven.
  4. Cook pizza at 475 for 5 mins. Reduce the oven temperature to 400 F after 5 minutes and cook for about 8-10 minutes or until the crust is golden brown (lightly browned) and the cheese is bubbling.

To Serve: Sprinkle oregano and red chili flakes (as per taste). Serve hot and enjoy.

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2 Comments

  1. Evelyn Nair

    Just in time for the weekend

  2. Khushi

    Thank you. Very useful. I will add it to our features on Sunday. Have a great weekend.

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