In our ongoing series of Italian cooking recipes, here’s something we’re all familiar with and love. Pizza!
Whether your eight or eighty, everyone seems to enjoy a good slice (or two) of authentic Italian pizza. Many variations of pizza have popped up over the years, but it all began with a basic cheese pizza. Because of the popularity of pizza today, it can be quite expensive. Even for just a “basic” tomato and cheese pizza.
Wouldn’t you just love to be able to recreate that fabulous pizza taste right from your very own kitchen? Well, it is truly not that difficult and not even that expensive. Try it and your friends and family will think it is from your favorite local pizza parlor!
- Refrigerated Pizza Dough. This is a dough that can be found in higher end supermarkets. You can also visit your local pizza establishment and ask if they will sell one to you. Many times they are happy to oblige. Just stay away from anything that comes in a refrigerated tube. Another option is to actually make your own dough. For the purposes of this recipe, we’re trying to make it as simple as possible.
- Approximately 1-2 Tbsp of Olive or Canola Oil. This is needed to apply to the crust of the pizza to make it crispy.
- 1 Lb of Mozzarella Cheese, Block Style. Choose a well known Italian brand.
- 1 Cup of Homemade Italian Tomato Sauce. Please, please, do not use jarred or canned tomato sauce for this. Basic Italian tomato sauce is extremely simple to make, you can make it in large batches, use it in a variety of recipes, and it freezes great. Also, the taste difference is incredible between the two. Try our Homemade Italian Tomato Sauce recipe. You won’t be disappointed.
- Fresh Spinach (optional). As you know there are countless topping that you can add to pizza. Spinach is one of my favorites and it provides a boatload of vitamins to boot. If you don’t like spinach you can delete it or try something else.
- Flour. This is just used to sprinkle on the area that you use to stretch the dough out so it doesn’t stick.
You’ll also need: A good quality rolling pin, a pizza stone, a pizza cutter, and a food brush.
Serves: One pizza serves 4 people with 2 slices each
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5-10 minutes in a preheated 500 degree oven
Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
Stretch pizza dough until able to fit on pizza stone.
Now, this may in fact take some practice. Remember that we are striving for a great tasting pizza here, the perfect “look” of the pizza will come with practice. Sprinkle a bit of flour on a clean surface and with your hands and rolling pin, stretch the dough till you are able to cover the stone.
Important: Try and manipulate the dough as little as possible, because too much handling can often leave the dough tough.
Brush dough with a bit of oil and apply an ample amount of tomato sauce. When applying the sauce try and not get too close to the edge of the dough. Focus on the middle and do not over sauce. Just enough to coat is fine.
Thinly slice mozzarella and apply to pizza until entire surface is covered.
Add any toppings that you would like. Spinach is pictured below.
Bake in oven approximately 5-10 minutes until cheese is melted and hot and pizza crust is brown and crispy.