Justin doesn’t normally get involved with the Thursday recipes – well, apart from taking the photos! However, this week, he’s actually done the cooking too. Don’t worry though, you’re in safe hands – as he was a chef for about 15 years before re-inventing himself as Mr H is for Home – and he does most of the savoury dishes in our household anyway.
We mentioned this lovely all-purpose tomato sauce in last week’s pizza post. Most people list tinned tomatoes in their store cupboard essentials, but we always have batches of this home-made tomato sauce in the fridge or freezer.
It’s quick – only taking about an hour – and very straightforward too.
It’s so flexible. The addition of ground black pepper and Parmesan makes for a simple yet delicious pasta sauce. It also provides the base for a myriad of other recipes. You can add all sorts of ingredients to it for some wonderful dishes – meatballs, chicken, fish, olives, roasted aubergines & peppers to name but a few. If you reduce it down and concentrate it a little further it makes the perfect tomato sauce for pizza topping. The recipe can be scaled up to suit requirements. You can also tweek quantities to suit your own taste – more garlicky, more olive oily etc… and add other herbs if you like too.
We make up a batch of home-made tomato sauce every few weeks and put a couple of two-portion containers into the freezer – ready to grab as required.
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It’s pizza for this week’s Cakes & Bakes. We’ve got a great pizzeria here in Todmorden – and we certainly can’t match their huge, wood fired oven… but we like to eat it in the house sometimes too!
There’s a very simple list of ingredients for the dough – flour, yeast, salt, olive oil, water.
With sub zero temperatures outside, the yeast mixture found the perfect place to come to life beside the fire.
The dough is simple to make and easy to work with.
Size and thickness is a matter of personal choice. In this house, Adelle has deep pan tendencies – Justin is a more thin & crispy kinda guy!
We rustled up a lovely tomato sauce. Olive oil, garlic, tomatoes & basil – cooked through, seasoned, reduced and strained.
This sauce was spread evenly over the pizza dough. Adelle then added roast aubergine, mozzarella and olives. Justin very similar, but he substituted Gruyère cheese for the mozzarella and also added red onion.
Both turned out very well – delicious in fact. We’ll continue experimenting with dough thickness, toppings and oven temperatures ’til we have absolute perfection!
Easy pizza base
- 2 tbsp fast acting yeast
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 300ml lukewarm water
- 500g strong flour
- ½ tsp sea salt
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- In a measuring jug mix the oil, lukewarm water, sugar and fast acting yeast
- Leave in a warm place for 10 minutes for the yeast to begin foaming
- In a large mixing bowl combine the flour and salt and make a well in the middle
- Add the yeast mixture and combine to a smooth, firm dough
- On a floured work surface, knead the dough for 5 minutes and form into a ball
- Put the ball into the large mixing bowl, cover with cling film and leave in a warm place to prove until it doubles in size - about an hour
- Tip the dough back out on to the floured work surface, divide into 3 equal parts and flatten each into 1cm circles
- Leave to rest for 15 minutes before adding toppings and cooking
H is for Home Harbinger http://hisforhomeblog.com/