What makes Pizza Israeli? Simply the fact that Israelis are crazy about Pizza! Also that pizzas in Israel are really really good.
When I was a small child in Israel we didn't really know what Pizza was. Specially not in my small Mediterranean village. Maybe if you went into our "big" city of Tel Aviv you could find some, somewhere, but not really.
My parents traveled to Europe for 2 months every winter for my father's work and by the time I was 6 years old they started taking me with them. I would be taken out of school with permission and homework. Lots of homework.
We always started in Paris, mainly for the fact that I had two uncles (my father's brothers) and 3 cousins there. We continued to Nice, Cannes and across the boarder to the UK. I had two aunts there (my father's sisters) and two more cousins. My aunt Cecile is the only surviving sister out of 7 children, to my delight I still see her and my cousins often!
Next stop was Rome. My mother had been trying for some time to describe to 6 year old me the new food she had eaten here last year. Pizza! She loved it and couldn't wait to eat it and have me taste it. It had cheese, tomato sauce and anchovies on it, I remember. Of course without spelling out the details, to a 6 year old Israeli child this was not appetizing at all. I didn't like this new food called Pizza!
Fast forward to now I was a teenager in 1970s Tel Aviv. Pizza now had become popular but you bought it mainly through street kiosks and… it was cut into small squares! I started to like it more by then but I was never a huge lover of it until I started making my own Pizza.
I make mine more authentic/Israeli by using my own home-made tomato sauce called Matbucha. Recipe for that is coming soon. But in the meanwhile you can use your favorite tomato sauce because this recipe is all about the easy to prepare dough!
This is an amazing recipe for pizza dough. Ever since I have started making it, which has now become a weekly dinner choice, we have not ordered a pizza from a Pizzeria.
This one is my half and half pizza! Half with sausage and spinach and half with just spinach. Some like it with and some prefer it without!
There is no need to wait for it to rise and you don't have to knead it or even use a mixer. All made by hand. Once you taste this pizza I promise you will never order in again.
2 ½ cups of bread flour, Can be substituted for all purpose flour, sieved
2 ¼ teaspoons of instant or dry active yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1 Cup warm water
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 450 degrees
In a large bowl add warm water, instant or dry active yeast and sugar, mix lightly and let sit for 10 minutes until it becomes a little creamy. This is one of the few times that I do put the instant or active dry yeast in water. Add sieved flour, salt, and olive oil and mix with a wooden spoon or by hand as I prefer to do it. Mix until it is all blended in well and you have a dough.
Lightly spray a large pizza pan with oil. I like to use one with holes at the bottom. (see link at the bottom of the page) It cooks my pizza evenly every time!
Use oiled hands to pick up the dough so it doesn't stick and shape it into a ball.
Place in the middle of the pizza pan and press from the middle outwards into the pan with a pushing motion all around until the entire pan is covered with dough. Flatten it a little with your palm, patting it down. (This is where a video would be helpful, it is in the works)
Add your favorite toppings. I use a home-made tomato sauce, (but your favorite sauce will do fine) spinach, mushrooms a little basil and top it with shredded mozzarella. Sometimes I make half with sausage and half spinach. (shown in top photo)
Bake in hot oven for about 12-15 minutes watching it as every oven temperature is different.
You will love this amazing pizza, tastes better than any Pizzeria!
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