People think making pizzas at home is too hard or impractical as you need a big hot oven and the dough is hard to make…WRONG.
Pizzas, as with all tasty food, is the food of the poor. A rough history tells you that the style of pizza we come to love (sauce and cheese) originated form the bay of Naples (there are versions spread all over Europe that are similar even Greece had its own version) Where poor people were trying to make plain bread palatable by adding tomatoes to the yeasty bread everyone ate.
And BOOM, PIZZA !
There are far too many types of pizza to list and explain but essentially all dough is created equal.A base of water, flour, yeast and depending where you are eating it, salt and maybe sugar. The amounts of each differ depending the size of the pizza you wish and how “puffy” you wish the crust to be. When making the dough you are best to learn by feel rather than measure, but a rough guide is about 300 grams of flour to 200ml of warm water mixed with 2 yeast packets and let to make a head like a beer, again you are best to experiment with more flour etc depending what you prefer.
Combine all the ingredients you are left with a sticky wet dough tip onto a floured surface and personally I like to flour up the dough till it stops sticking to your hands, don’t panic if your hands are super horrible at this point its all part of the fun, just add some dry flour to one hand and rub your hands together than the dough comes off easy.
Now you have the not so sticky dough chuck it into a bowl thats a decent size ( I use a plastic salad bowl) and let it rest and prove this isn’t an exact science I usually get impatient and take it out early but I think 30 mins ish is good enough if you have paid attention the dough should be bigger once you remove it from the proving bowl.
Working the dough is the technical term for making it look like a pizza its very simple, don’t chuck it in the air your not a pizza pro in a New York slice shop roll it out using a traditional rolling pin or an Italian rolling pin (Wine bottle) We aren’t fans of perfect pizzas so the style we tend to have a different looking pizza every time.(see below)
My advice is to use a simple baking tray (that you have lubed up to save the dough sticking) because they tick all the boxes you need , it has edges for containing cheese melt and sauce spillage while being thin enough to conduct the heat directly into the base to save cooked edges and raw bottoms.
—–PRO-TIP COURSE OR FINE CORNMEAL ARE GREAT TO USE AS TRAY LUBE—
Toppings are all optional I’ve seen everything from sauce pies that are literally just sauce and breadcrumbs to 70000 meats and cheeses, this is the most beautiful aspect of the Pizza in my eyes the ability to have anything you want and nothing you don’t want. But in the absence of pomp and frills we suggest good quality buffalo mozzarella and a simple tomato passata, very simple but delicious.
I would say at this point you have to decide how you are going to actually cook this pizza, don’t worry as long as the oven is hot(220 for gas 240 for everything else) and the tray is lubed your fine.
Congratulations! if you have not burned the pizza too badly/ at all, you have just saved yourself lots of money in the future from pizza ordering and made yourself look like a golden god or culinary gangster dependent on your view to the people away to eat your homemade PIZZA !