Once, a long long time ago, I made this pizza in Home Economics class at school. It’s kind of weird because it has a wholemeal base with no yeast but the sauce is totally homemade and needless to say, you can put all sorts of fun stuff on top. I pulled out every kind of cheese and possible pizza topping I could find in the fridge (the mammy was in a funny mood and kept suggesting the most horrible toppings imaginable – sprouts, raspberries, banana. If I wanted a fresh fruit pizza, I’d go to Matchbox in DC and order it). I ended up with a very exotic Kilmeaden cheddar and some mozzarella – well why tamper with the classics? It got a bit fun with the salami and spicy chorizo, and then in my corner I threw down some pineapple. It soothes me to know that although the base is pretty inauthentic for a pizza, at least I’m not losing points for making it rectangular – the Italians do it! Pop down to Steps of Rome on Chatham Street as soon as possible for the salami pizza and the one with potato on it. So delicious.
I made garlic bread to go with this. It might be a good idea to get the garlic butter going now so the flavour has a chance to infuse. Mash up 2 large cloves of garlic – use a mortar and pestle if you feel like it. Mix them up with about 1 oz/ 25g of butter that’s at room temperature. Add a pinch of salt and if you have garlic salt, add a pinch of that too. Cover and set aside.
For the base:75g wholemeal flour 50g butter 200g self-raising flour 1/2 tsp salt 125ml of milk
1. Preheat the oven to 200C. Grease a 9″ x 12″ baking tray.
2. Cut the butter into the flour. Add the salt. Gradually add the milk to form a soft, slightly sticky dough that’ll clean the inside of the bowl.
3. On a floured surface, roll the dough into a rectangular shape that will fit the baking tray. Prick the base multiple times with a fork. Bake for 10 mins or until the base begins to brown slightly on the edges and it feels firm to touch.
For the tomato sauce:1 tin of chopped tomatoes (preferably with no added bits and pieces. Someday I will use fresh tomatoes, I promise) 1 tblsp tomato purée 1 small-ish onion 2 cloves of garlic 1/2 tsp each of rosemary, oregano and parsley 1 tsp sugar Salt and pepper to season Oil and a knob of butter for frying
1. Heat the oil in the pan over a medium heat. Finely chop the onion and garlic. Throw them into the pan, smoosh them around a bit, then add the knob of butter and smoosh for another 2 mins until the onion is beginning to brown and soften.
2. Pour the tin of tomatoes into the pan. Put the tablespoon of tomato purée into the empty can, add in a good splash of water and swish it round to get as much of the tomato out of the can as possible and add this to the pan. Season with the herbs, sugar, salt and pepper until it tastes the way you want it to. Turn down the heat and allow it to simmer for 5-10mins until it’s thick and saucy.
3. Spread the sauce over the wholemeal base. Cover the sauce with all your cheese and toppings. Bake in the oven for 15mins.
4. Butter your bread with the garlic butter. If there’s mozzarella left over, throw that on top. Bake in the oven or under the grill but keep an eye on it – I always forget about my garlic bread and it tends to get burnt, which is good because I like burnt things.