We do eat quite a few pizzas at Chez Foti, probably too many. Well about once a week if the truth be known. But in my defense they are always homemade. And I’m not being a ponsey foodie by saying that. Believe me I’ve absolutely nothing against good quality take away pizza, but we do live in distinctly rural SW France and without wanting to be too rude, the quality of the take away pizzas in these parts is considerably below par. Bordering inedible. Which is a shame as the only two fast food joints in a 25 km radius both happen to be pizza take aways!. And once or twice bitten I won’t be going back. Just don’t get me started on the supermarket offerings either. Think 80s Britain, say no more. Hence I’ve become a bit of geek at homemade pizza ….. and homemade Thai/Chinese/Indian to boot!. And we do happen to have an original bread oven in our lounge that bakes the most perfect pizzas.
I love playing around with inventing toppings and this recipe so happens to be one of my favourites of the moment. Think Puttanesca Sauce but on a pizza. Puttanesca, in case you didn’t know, is a tomato based sauce revved up with oodles of garlic, anchovies, capers, chilli and olives. And it’s sublime on a pizza with the addition of Mozzarella and a little Parmesan. Pizza simplicity at it’s best.
I’m also delighted to be entering, for the first ever time, my Pizza Puttanesca to Javelin Warrior’s Made with Love Mondays, a weekly series promoting, sharing and celebrating foods made entirely from scratch. Foods without any of the nasties and all the good stuff!.
Serves 1 to 2 (depending on how much of a pizza monster you happen to be!)
One quantity of Pizza Dough (I usually stick to this Jamie Oliver recipe, using part semolina flour when I can get hold of it)
2 tablespoons of Olive Oil
2 cloves of Garlic
a Red Chili (or go wild with 2 if you like your heat), finely sliced
4 Anchovy Fillets in oil
a 400g can of good quality Chopped Tomatoes or 450g of ripe and flavoursome Fresh Tomatoes (I’m still using up my frozen stock from The Great Chez Foti Tomato Harvest!)
a very large pinch of Black Pepper
a pinch of Sugar
a dessertspoon of Capers, rinsed
40g of stoned Black Olives, halved
80g of Mozzarella cheese, finely sliced
a heaped tablespoon of finely grated Parmesan or Grana Padano
Special Equipment: a pizza stone, pizza baking sheet or an ordinary baking tray/sheet
Pre-heat your oven to the hottest it will go and pop your pizza stone or baking tray in to warm up.
Heat the oil in a large saucepan on a gentle heat. Fry the chili, garlic and anchovies for a few moments until the anchovies are almost disintegrated. Slide in the tomatoes and add a very generous pinch of coarsely ground black pepper and a small pinch of sugar. Give everything a good stir. Allow to simmer gently for 20 minutes.
The sauce is ready when it’s considerably thickened and very flavoursome. Stir in the capers. Have a taste check adding more black pepper to suit. Obviously you could add salt but there’s a fair whack already in there from the anchovies so it’s unlikely you’ll need more.
Now for the pizza. Roll out your pizza dough to your desired size and thickness. I personally prefer mine very thin. Place on your hot pizza stone or baking tray.
Spread the puttanesca sauce evenly over the base. Place the halved olives and slices of mozzarella. Scatter over the parmesan or grana padano.
Place in your extremely hot oven and cook until crisp and golden. This could be anywhere between 5 and 15 minutes! Our woodfired bread/pizza oven usually takes less than 5 minutes and the oven at it’s hottest around 10.
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January 28th, 2013 at 2:23 pm
As my husband says ‘why go out to eat McDonalds when you can have filet mignon at home’. Literally and metaphorically!!
The pizza looks really delicious – you must be one of few people putting their bread oven to such good use 🙂
January 29th, 2013 at 11:19 am
Ha ha, so true! Though it is occasionally a bit of a treat to be lazy and get a take away, which simply isn’t an option round here. We lived in SW London before and were on the doorstep of many a very good take away of pretty much any world cuisine you could think of.
January 28th, 2013 at 2:44 pm
I love homemade pizza (the kind with homemade crust, especially) – and I don’t make it nearly often enough given how EASY it is to throw together in a jiffy. Especially if you have balls of dough already in your freezer just waiting to be used… 😉 What a marvelous flavorsome combination and thank you so much for sharing with Made with Love Mondays! Welcome to the series!
January 29th, 2013 at 11:24 am
Ah thanks JW! Pizzas are so incredibly easy to make aren’t they, it’s a bit of a weekend ritual in our house. Though I’ve not thought of freezing the dough, what a great time-saving idea! I really must do this so can bring out and make a quickie dinner for my little people, who’ve turned into pizza monsters too. Thanks!
January 28th, 2013 at 2:54 pm
Another fab pizza Lou! I adore Pasta Puttanesca so I would no doubt love this too. Such great flavour combos x
January 29th, 2013 at 11:26 am
Thanks Anneli. I’ve been making Pasta Puttanesca loads lately and suddenly had the idea a few weeks ago of putting it on a pizza and it really works. You must try it!
January 28th, 2013 at 4:07 pm
[…] I’ve just realised through reading Chez Foti’s great-sounding recipe for Pizza Puttanesca that these mushroom crumbles would probably qualify for Made with Love Mondays over at Javelin […]
January 28th, 2013 at 4:13 pm
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with having pizza on a weekly basis – especially when it’s homemade, and even more especially with a topping like this one!
January 29th, 2013 at 11:29 am
Thanks Sarah, you’ve made me feel a little better about my pizza addiction! I’m still making your butternut and shallot pizza on a pretty regular basis by the way, it’s so good.
January 29th, 2013 at 10:57 am
I love puttanesca sauce so this is a great idea I must try. Totally know what you mean about making your own ‘takeaway’ food – something I end up doing in our rural spot too. Still jealous of your bread oven!
January 29th, 2013 at 11:31 am
You must try it, works so well on a pizza. Which rural little spot to you live in then Andrea?
January 29th, 2013 at 3:34 pm
This certainly had me thinking “Why didn’t I think of that?” I will certainly try it on a pizza.
And I have serious envy at your bread oven!
January 30th, 2013 at 8:40 pm
This looks absolutely delicious and your base looks perfect too, just how I like it – really thin and crispy. Yum!
January 31st, 2013 at 2:02 pm
Thin crust pizza is my favourite and as a lover of the Tart’s Spaghetti – this flavour combo would suit me! LUSH!