Ultimate Wood-fired Pizza

In our last blog, we gave you the ultimate guide on how to make your wood-fired clay oven. In this blog, we give you the ultimate wood-fired pizza recipe, which promises to deliver an authentic crisp base with a delicious smoked flavour. Once the base and sauce are made they can be stored in a fridge or freezer for when required.

Wood-fired clay ovens cook at a very high temperature around 400C, whereas household ovens cannot get this high. It is worth noting that clay ovens take an hour to get up the temperature, but once there you can cook authentic wood-fired pizza with a crisp base and delicious smoked flavour in as little as 60 seconds. See our blog on How to Make a Wood-fired Clay Oven.

Ingredients:
1kg strong bread flour
1 tsp fine sea salt
2 x 7g sachets of dried yeast
1tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

Tomato sauce:
4 garlic cloves
Olive oil
1 bunch of fresh basil leaves
3 x 400g tins of chopped plum tomatoes
Sea salt
Fresh ground black pepper

Topping Ideas:

  • Roughly chopped kale, quality anchovy fillets, half fresh chilli chopped finely, Italian style sausages sliced, 150g taleggio scattered.
  • Caramelised onion, fresh thyme and blue cheese scattered.
  • Taleggio, fontina, roasted butternut squash, pancetta, fresh sage.
  • Provolone sautéed broccoli robe, pancetta scattered.
  • Roasted mixed Mediterranean veg and crumbled goats cheese.
  • Roasted mixed bell peppers and smoked buffalo mozzarella torn.
  • Fontina, roasted asparagus, parmigiana, a drizzle of white truffle oil.
  • Mixed tapas such as chopped olives, sundried tomatoes, anchovies and feta scattered.

Method:
Peel and finely chop the garlic, then sauté in a large wide pan with 1tbsp of olive oil until slightly coloured. Tear the basil leaves into the pan with the tinned chopped tomatoes, add sea salt and ground pepper to taste.

When it comes to the boil, remove from the hob and strain through a coarse sieve into a large bowl, using the spoon to push any chunky tomatoes pieces through and scraping any excess tomato on the back into the bowl. Discard the remaining garlic and basil in the sieve. Pour the sauce back into the pan and bring to the boil, then turn down to a simmer for 5 minutes, until it’s the ideal consistency for spreading onto pizza bases.

To make the pizza dough, sieve the salt and flour onto a clean work surface or chopping board and make a well in the middle. Mix the yeast, sugar and olive oil into 650ml of lukewarm water in a jug and leave for a few minutes before pouring into the well. Get a fork and work the flour from the sides of the well into the middle and mix into the liquid gradually. When the mixture begins to come together, work the rest of the flour by hand. Knead into a smooth, springy dough and place the ball in a large flour-dusted bowl and cover with a damp cloth and place in a warm room for an hour until the dough has doubled in size.

Remove the dough to a flour-dusted surface and knead into the work top pushing any air out. You can then either use this straight away or keep it wrapped in Clingfilm in the fridge or freezer until needed. If using immediately, divide the dough into 6 to 8 balls.

Get your wood-fired oven going at least an hour before cooking and meanwhile, place heavy baking trays in the oven to heat up. Roll the pizza bases 15-20 minutes before you want to cook them. Spread the tomato sauce over each base and add your chosen toppings. 

Place in the wood-fired oven one by one for about 1-4 minutes depending on temperature and thickness of the pizza bases. Enjoy with a rustic Italian salad a good bottle of crisp and zesty Italian white wine. The perfect excuse for a wood-fired oven pizza party, enjoy!

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Hope you have enjoyed our Ultimate Wood-fired Pizza blog.