Five reasons why pizza is what you should make when friends come over:
- Everybody loves pizza.
- You have no risk of someone not liking your food – even the fussiest eater can choose a flavour combo they like.
- It’s an activity food – supply a range of toppings and people can build their own pizza for everyone to try.
- Your friends will be impressed with you for making them such a special treat (if you make the base; otherwise somewhat less so…).
- The smell of freshly baked pizza…
Three tips for making awesome pizza:
- Get the tomato sauce perfect. My awesome pizza sauce is heavy on the oregano and its base is tomato passata. I used to cook my sauces slowly on a wood-burning stove for hours. Now I use the slow cooker for a similar effect.
- Home-made base is worth the effort. No matter how simple or complex the recipe, freshly baked is just so much better than packet. Mine uses mainly white bread flour and about an eighth of the mix is fine cornflour (not cornstarch, but yellow flour). This gives it something of that authentic Italian base flavour. I also use yellow flour for dusting the surfaces and making sure the base doesn’t stick.
- Mozzarella, never cheddar. Unless you’re making a deliberate creative fusion statement, cheddar does not belong on pizza. There is no substitute for mozzarella (and if you can afford the good stuff, you won’t regret it).
I’m happy to say my pizza met the approval of my discerning guests, aged 4 and 7. With compliments like those, you guys can come for dinner any time!