Monday, March 16, 2009

Pepperoni Pizza

Hubby and kids were very much surprised (or maybe a little shocked). For the first time ever, we did not have rice for dinner. We had pizza!!! And it is not take-out or delivered. Everything, including the dough is home-made!

This is an Asian kitchen, where it is customary to eat rice for breakfast, lunch and dinner. :) Why? It had always been a belief, or at least this is what the elders say, that we need to eat rice in order to feel full, and to have energy needed for the day. But since I am learning to bake bread, I have removed rice from our breakfast and changed our breakfast staple to bread - mostly made from wholewheat and whole-grains. I have discovered that this kind of home-made bread (not the airy, soft and fluffy commercial bakery ones) is filling and healthy. If I use these bread to make sandwiches with cheese and healthy proteins, this really makes a complete, and balanced breakfast meal.

So, I have learned to be more flexible with our food staples because of blogging! :D

Pizza for dinner! Daughter was thrilled, actually. She loves pizza.

The recipe I am sharing with you today is actually for the basic pizza dough. I got the recipe from the label of the pizza pan that I bought. :) Surprisingly, the pizza crust turned out to be tasty. It is even better than the thick-crust pizza of a famous pizza chain :)

newly kneaded dough, before rising

3 C all purpose flour
2 T olive oil
1 t salt
1 T granulated sugar
1 C warm water (110F or 45C)
1 (.25 oz) package active dry yeast (I substituted 1 and 1/2 t instant dry yeast)

1. Combine flour, salt, sugar and yeast in a large bowl. Add oil and warm water. Mix to form a dough.

2. Knead for 10 minutes until smooth and elastic. Place kneaded dough in a greased (I used olive oil) bowl. (See the photo above). Cover loosely with an oiled clingfilm and leave to rise for an hour or until doubled (See photo below.)

3. Grease the pizza pan (I also used olive oil). Tip the dough over to the pizza pan, and use hands to spread and shape the dough to cover the pan. I have read somewhere that using a rolling pin would alter the texture of the pizza crust.

4. Top with desired flavor. Let rest for 30 minutes. Bake in a preheated oven at 375F for 20 to 25 minutes. Slice and serve.

You can choose to top your pizza with any filling. I chose to top our first pizza with tomato sauce, pepperoni, tomatoes, onions, ham and cheese because that is Daughter's favorite. I added olives (on the half portion of the pizza) because Hubby loves olives.

Depending on your cheese, you can add the cheese before baking. What I have on hand is quick-melt mozarella cheese, so I had to add the cheese during the last 5 minute of baking.

Sharing our family's first home-made pizza with the "Bake Your Own Bread" community, over at Sandy's At the Baker's Bench. Like Sandy, I encourage you to bake your own bread. It is healthy, nutritious, delicious, and it is not hard as you think. :) Check out the round-up at the end of the month! :)


Mary Bergfeld said...

That pizza looks so good, Ning. I'll bet the children were really thrilled. When mine were young they loved to help make our pizza. We had some strange combinations but they ate what they made.

noobcook said...

woah, home-made pizza! Looks great man with so much cheese and the black olives =D

Anonymous said...


May I just share an interesting blog, about the origins of spring rolls? I find that all Chinese should read this, as part of their heritage. :-)

BTW, I have a suggestion for you. For a better-textured crust (as in, soft and chewy on the inside but crisp on the outside), I suggest you do the following:

1. After kneading the dough, put it immediately in the fridge. It will rise slower, about 2 hours.
2. Punch it down, then let it rise again. This time, it will rise even slower, maybe 2-4 hours or more.
3. leave the dough in the fridge for 12 hours, then use. No need to let it warm up to room temperature.

Doing this enhances the aroma and texture of the dough. This is what I use on my pizza recipes.

Also, try to mix and match different types of cheeses. You can actually use cheap regular sandwich cheese for budget reasons, and improve it by adding a better quality cheese like parmesan, cream cheese, mozarella, real american cheddar, etc. This will make it extra cheesy, at a discounted cost. (1 cup regular cheese plus 1 cup of parmessan, for example, is cheaper than just plain mozarella. If you season it right, you won't taste the difference.)

Also, you can make your own tomato sauce. Here is my recipe, which I'd like to share to you and your readers:

1 whole head of garlic (about 12 cloves)
2 tbsps wine (optional)
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp vinegar
1/2 kilo tomatoes
basil, oregano and pepper to taste (I use 1 tsp of each)

Simply brown the garlic in 4 tbsps of olive oil. Puree the tomatoes or chop them. Add the tomatoes and wine and vinegar, as well as the sugar. Simmer for 20 minutes, or until it reduces in half. Add the spices in the last minute of cooking.

Using homemade tomato sauce means you wont be using too much MSG and salt (notice the recipe has no salt?) Also, fresh tomatoes are always better for you. This tomato sauce can be eaten as is, even with plain fried fish, or eggs.

I myself bake for my family. I hope you get inspired!

Thank you!


tigerfish said...

I still prefer Hawaiian pizza. ;p

Ivy said...

The best part about pizza is that you add all the ingredients that you like. I love olives and onions in pizza and a dash of oregano on it.

Anonymous said...

Your homemade pizza seriously puts everything commercial to shame - it's beautiful!

Oggi said...

Congrats on the pizza! It looks yummy.

Galatians 5:22 said...

I hope you can send me some.... lol :D

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Thanks, Mary! The children were thrilled alright, and their mother, too! :) It feels great to have made something totally from scratch :)

Thanks Noobcook! ")

Wow, A, thank you so much for all your tips! I will certainly keep these in mind :)

Soli Deo Gloria said...

I'll keep that in mind Tigerfish! :)

I agree, Ivy. I have an interesting combination in mind already for our next pizza! :)

Thanks Midge! Awww... (and blush)...

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Thanks, Oggi!

Glad to let you have a slice Galatians!! :)

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