A thin, crispy base. A sweet garlic tomato sauce. Creamy mozzarella. Peppery basil. Those four components are the makings of a great pizza be it homemade or not. The satisfaction comes when it is homemade and all those components are achieved.

Having a pizza oven in my garden is an ultimate dream, but with the British climate it’s hard to justify such an investment so I’m learning to make the most of my oven to create an ultimate crispy base. The key is heating the oven to the highest it will go and heating the baking tray up at the same time. If your dough is not as sticky as mine was you can place the pizzas straight onto the baking tray no foil needed!

Jamie Oliver’s recipe for a pizza base and sauce is my go to. The sauce is so simple and takes as little time as it would to go and buy the pizza. Simple put garlic, olive oil, basil and tinned tomatoes into a pan and simmer for 20 minutes. The end result is a sweet garlic sauce with a peppery hit from the basil.

A creamy mozzarella is the finishing touch for the ultimate homemade pizza.

pizza

The Recipe – Makes 3 bases but the sauce makes 2

Dough:

500g strong white bread flour
1/2 tbsp. sea salt
7g sachet of dried yeast
1/2 tbsp. golden caster sugar
325ml lukewarm water

Sauce:

Extra virgin olive oil
1 clove of garlic, crushed
A bunch of basil leaves
400g tin plum tomatoes

Salt and pepper

2 balls of mozzarella, torn up
Handful of basil

– Place the flour and salt in a bowl and make a well in the centre.
– Add the yeast and sugar to the tepid water and mix. Leave for a few minutes then pour into the flour. Mix all the flour in and when it becomes hard to mix with your fork use your hands.
– Knead the dough stretching the dough towards you and then pushing away. Do this for 10 minutes until the dough is smooth.
– Flour the top of the dough and cover with cling film for 15 minutes.
– Divide into 3.
– Flour the work surface and roll out the dough until it’s around 0.5cm thick.
– Oil a piece of tin foil and flour then place the base on top.
– Chill in the fridge.
– For the sauce fry the garlic in the oil until golden brown.
– Add the basil and tomatoes and simmer for 20 minutes.
– Crush the tomatoes so it is smooth.
– Pre heat the oven and baking trays to 250 degrees.
– Spread the sauce on the bases and top with mozzarella and basil.
– Bake in the oven for 10 minutes until golden brown and crisp.