Introduction: Scratch-in-a-Flash Pizza in Five Easy Steps
As a 10-year-old diehard pizza fanatic, I have been slowly modifying and improving our pizza with my dad. It's a perfect addition to your next backyard cookout or Friday-night dinner. The best part is, it's one of the fastest pizza recipes that you will ever come across in addition to being delicious and even satisfying the pickiest pizza-eaters.
pizza stone (may be substituted with a baking sheet)
1 cup warm water (105-110 degrees Fahrenheit or 41-43 degrees Celsius)
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp active dry yeast
3 tbsp olive oil
2-2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1 clove garlic, minced (or 1 tbsp of pre-minced garlic)
15 oz of crushed tomatoes
6 oz tomato paste
1/2 tbsp sugar
3/4 tsp salt
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
cracked black pepper (10-15 cranks, depending on your taste)
2 tbsp olive oil
low moisture mozzarella cheese (2 cups)
Step 1: Dough
The dough is an essential part of the pizza experience, so a good dough is necessary for making an outstanding pizza. First, put your warm water into a large mixing bowl, then add the sugar and yeast and stir. Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes. Add 1 tbsp of olive oil and combine. Add the flour and 1 tsp of salt to the dough. Transfer to a floured surface and add extra flour if necessary. Then, add the remaining 3 tbsp olive oil to a medium-sized mixing bowl and transfer the dough into the bowl. Leave to rise for 15 minutes, (this is optional, but it makes the dough chewier, easier to work with, and overall better tasting when the final product comes out. But, if you're cut for time, you'll still get an outstanding pizza without adding this extra step) and knead for 15-20 minutes. To get the gluten going, my brother and I threw the dough around like a ball (see video above), and we rolled it into pizza crust form. To get a nice and crispy crust, fold in the external 3/4 of an inch of crust onto the main layer of dough. This will be a perfect base for the toppings that will be added.
Step 2: Sauce
The sauce is the robust, distinctive, acidic flavor that is one of the defining features of the pizza. We begin our sauce by adding our garlic and olive oil to a saucepan over medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Then, add your tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, basil, oregano, pepper, sugar, 2 tsp salt, and stir. Cover the pot, and let simmer on low heat for 25-30 minutes. This will make you 3 servings of pizza sauce, so you can freeze this concoction and reheat it by letting it simmer over low heat in a saucepot for any pizza-related items that you might be creating. After this, set it to the side for about 10 minutes to cool. Once cooled, put about 2 tbsp of olive oil all throughout your pizza crust. Then, take 2 ladle-fulls (more or less depending on your taste) and spread it around using the bottom of your ladle. After this, you will be ready to apply your cheeses.
Step 3: Cheeses and Toppings
The cheeses in this pizza are fairly straightforward but are still a very important part of making the pizza amazing. Your first cheese is your shredded, low moisture (this is important), mozzarella, make sure to spread it evenly among all parts of your pizza, this will serve as a base for your toppings and will add a delicious texture to your pizza. After that, adding a layer of (preferably freshly grated) parmesan cheese is a must for any top-notch pizza. Adding a few shreds of parmesan cheese (doesn't have to be fine or coarse, any size will do) throughout your pizza will create a very nice flavor profile. Making sure you have the texture of a high-moistured cheese and the flavor of dry cheese is essential to any pizza you might try making at home. If you wanted to be fancy, you could add just a little bit of Pecorino-Romano might make the dish a little more suitable for a higher-end party, but we didn't do that this time. As said earlier, I can't stress enough how important it is to spread out the cheeses, this ensures that both sides will cook evenly and that there aren't clumps of cheese in one place and a lack of it in another place. Once you have all your cheeses in place, you can add your toppings. This can be anything, but for us we added my personal favorite, mushrooms. If you only wanted your favorite topping on one side or 3 quarters of the pizza, as we did, it's totally fine, it'll turn out the same. After that, it's time to put it in the oven.
Step 4: Bake
Make sure to preheat your oven to 500 degrees Fahrenheit (260 degrees Celsius) and put your pizza stone in before you start preheating. Once fully preheated, stick your pizza (with the platter) in on top of the pizza stone for 10 minutes or until the crust has a slight golden-brown color (be sure to wear some sort of heat protection, it will help ensure that you don't get hurt while making this pizza). After that, let the pizza cool for 5-10 minutes and it'll be ready to enjoy!
Step 5: Enjoy!
Finally, cut up the pizza into the desired shapes, and serve it up at your next party or celebration or just as a casual dinner with your family. It's a sure winner for everyone in the family, even my little brother, who barely eats anything, confidently asked for seconds. Taking about 1 hour to make and being a fun family activity, this pizza checks off all of your pizza-making criteria, quick, delicious, and fun.
Participated in the
Pizza Speed Challenge 2020