It’s not delivery. And there’s no way it would be mistaken for it, but this pizza margherita is still pretty darn good.
This recipe can be broken up into several stages so it’s not a time consuming meal to prepare. Make the sauce in advance; it can be stored in the fridge for at least a week. Let the dough rise overnight. Because the pizza only needs a few minutes in the oven, you can still have a quick dinner.
What I’ve learned: it’s not hard to make pizza; it’s hard to make pizza look good.
Maybe try dividing the dough and rolling it into personal-sized pies. I went for one big sort of rectangular-ish pizza. It still cooks all the way through (Unlike one gigantic chocolate chip cookie that ends up half-baked -- don't tell me you haven't tried that. Raw cookie is better than raw pizza.) Who says pizza has to be round or even semi-circular anyway?
If you do make smaller pizzas, closely watch the oven so as not to overcook them.
1 C. warm water
½ tsp. sugar
1 packet active dry yeast
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 ½ C. flour
2 tsp. salt
1 28-ounce can whole peeled plum tomatoes with juice
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 small shallots, chopped
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
12 ounces fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
fresh ground pepper
fresh basil leaves
Dough: Pour water into the bowl of an electric mixer. Add sugar and yeast, stirring until dissolved. Let stand until foamy (about five minutes). Add oil, flour and salt. Mix with paddle attachment until combined. Then mix with dough hook for five minutes. Knead dough on a floured surface until smooth. Put dough in a large oil bowl, turning dough to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in warmth for about three hours, or in refrigerator overnight.
Sauce: Pulse tomatoes in blender until smooth; set aside. Put garlic and oil in sauce pan for about 45 seconds. Add shallots and cook for one minute. Add tomatoes, salt and pepper. Reduce to medium-low heat. Simmer for 30 minutes.
Baking: Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Divide dough in half and roll out flat. Brush each with olive oil. Spread with sauce, leaving a border. Top with cheese and sprinkle with pepper. Bake 10 to 12 minutes. Let pizza slightly cool and top with basil.