Learn from Jamie Oliver’s Channel 4 show, Jamie Cooks Italy, how easy it is to make authentic Neapolitan pizza dough at home.
This is my research-based take on a classic Neapolitan pizza base, and it yields fantastic results when made at home. Although it may seem backwards, Neapolitans start with the liquid and then add the dry ingredients. You can get great results with a pizza stone and a conventional oven, but nothing beats the flavour you get with a wood-burning oven.
|For the dough:|
|1kg||Tipo 00 flour, plus extra for dusting|
|1 x 7g||sachet of dried yeast|
Tools of the Trade
A pizza stone is required.
In addition to the proving time, cooking time is a total of 45 minutes.
A large bowl needs 700 ml of warm water and 10 g of sea salt poured to it. You may start making a batter by adding the flour a little at a time and whisking it along with the water. After waiting two minutes and stirring in the yeast, you may proceed. To make a dough that is soft and pliable, the remaining 90 percent of flour should be added gradually. Place the dough on a floured surface and knead it for 20 minutes, or until it is smooth and elastic (or 10 minutes in a free-standing mixer with a dough hook). Flour a bowl, place the dough inside, cover with a damp tea towel, and set the bowl somewhere warm and draft-free for at least an hour, or until the dough has doubled in size. Make a fist and pound the air, then wrap into a sausage shape, cut into six pieces, and roll each piece into a ball while extending the edges below. Spread out on a baking sheet that has been greased, sprinkle with oil, cover with a tea towel and cling film, and let rise in the fridge overnight (for better flavour and a more relaxed dough).
Preheat the oven to 240 degrees Celsius with a pizza stone inside. A fish slice may be used to transfer one ball of dough to a floured work area. Put the ball on a flat surface and let gravity do the rest; now pick it up, turn it over carefully, and stretch it out until it has a diameter of 30 centimetres. After stretching the dough over the palms of your hands, place it on a floured pizza paddle or board. The dough should be somewhat thicker toward the edges. You may test its freedom of movement by giving it some form and shaking it. Top it up with anything you choose, but do it quickly and sparingly (see my favourites below). Put the pizza stone in the oven, and then immediately close the door to trap the heat. Wait 7 to 8 minutes until it is golden, crisp, and ready to consume.
Energy: 569 FAT 23.8g carbohydrates, 1.1g protein, 2.6g salt, 1.7g fibre, and 112.7g sugar. 4.3g
The Original Margherita (pictured above)
The Neopolitans don’t fool about; their tomato sauce is best kept gloriously simple, raw, and fresh. Use clean hands to mash canned San Marzano plum tomatoes until smooth, then spread evenly over the pizza crust. Sprinkle some freshly grated Parmesan cheese, mozzarella cheese, and a few torn basil leaves on top. Sprinkle with more basil leaves, drizzle with olive oil, and bake.
Top with tomato sauce (see above), then ricotta cheese seasoned with fresh marjoram leaves, finely grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese, and lemon zest. Put in the oven the young courgettes that have been mixed with olive oil and lemon juice.
Infused with Grapes and Sweet Honey
Toss fresh rosemary, red onion, red grapes, and black grapes in olive oil. When the pizza base is done baking, top it with pine nuts, freshly grated pecorino cheese, shredded mozzarella cheese, and a pinch of basil.
Pasta with Tomato and Rosemary
Use the tomato sauce from the preceding recipe to top your pizza crust, and then sprinkle on some fresh rosemary leaves that have been coated in olive oil. Sprinkle on some smoky n’duja, grate some fresh Parmesan, add a drizzle of olive oil, and bake.