30 May 2012

Kids Cook: Perfect Pizza from Scratch

This week for our family culinary adventure we made Pizza.
Now usually this means shop-bought pizza bases with us simply piling on the toppings. But not this time.
We made pizza dough from scratch... and it turned out fabulously perfect. Better than gourmet.
We may be lost to Domino's for all time, because not only were these the best pizzas we've eaten in yonks, but they were also pretty quick and very easy.

First let me introduce you to my enthusiastic junior chefs...

Big brother was (again) not particularly interested in chef-ing. Never mind.

Recipe for Perfect Pizza Dough

1 and a half cups of warm water
2 teaspoons (1 sachet) of dried yeast
a pinch of caster sugar
4 cups of plain flour
1 teaspoon of salt
1/4 cup of olive oil

STEP 1: Activate the Yeast
Combine the water yeast and sugar in a small bowl. Set aside (or watch vigilantly if preferred) for five minutes until the yeast is dissolved or foamy

STEP 2: Ready Dry Ingredients
Combine flour and salt in a large bowl and make a "well" in the centre.

STEP 3: Mix
Pour the yeast mixture and the oil into the "well" in the dry ingredients, and mix using a butter knife making cutting motions until thoroughly combined.

STEP 4: Knead
Use your hands to bring the dough together in the owl. Brush lightly with oil and tip onto a lightly floured surface. Knead with your hands for ten minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic (Take turns nicely please).

STEP 5: Wait
Place the ball of dough in an oiled bowl and (turn the dough to lightly cover the whole ball with olive oil). Cover and place somewhere warm and dry, away from draughts. Leave it to rise for 30 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size (a truly miraculous sight for the novice dough-maker).

STEP 6: Add Toppings
Split the dough in half and stretch out with your fingers to fit the tray (or pizza stone) lined with baking paper (prevents sticking). Spread with pasta sauce/tomato sauce/tomato puree and then top with your favourite toppings and grated mozzarella cheese.

Bake in the oven at 180oC for 15-20 minutes or until the dough is puffy and browned, and the cheese is golden and bubbling.

From our dough we made one big kids pizza (ham and pineapple), three mini pizzas for lunches the next day PLUS one giant grown-ups pizza, half seafood (tuna, salmon, mussels, olives) and half "supreme" (ham, pineapple, basil, zucchini, olives, salami). The dough went a very long way!

Reward your little chefs for their productive pizza-making with perfect parfaits for pudding... yummy!

Parfaits: A scoop of vanilla icecream topped Aunt Betty's"jelly jiggle" sauce (or raspberry jelly), mini marshmallows, chocolate mousse (from a packet or a can) and a squirt of Dairy Whip cream.

Tune in next week when we will attempt to create a Pineapple Upside-Down Cake (eek).


Printable Recipe Card (right-click to save to your computer)

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