Pizza bread

Children and adults love this pizza bread that we serve in the restaurant. It’s also great for a barbecue and is just that little bit different. Feel free to vary the toppings depending on what you fancy

Ingredients


  • 450 g (1lb) strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp fast action dried yeast (7g/1/4oz sachet)
  • 225 ml (8fl oz) tepid water
  • 1 tblsp rapeseed oil, plus extra for greasing
  • for the topping:
  • 200 g (7oz) tomato sauce
  • 75 g (3oz) mature cheddar cheese, grated
  • 125 g (4 1/2oz) basil pesto
  • 2 tblsp chilli jam

Tomato sauce (makes 350ml)
  • 1 tblsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 6 large ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and cut into chunks, or 400g canned chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp tomato purée
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tblsp chopped fresh basil

Basil pesto (makes about 250ml)
  • 1 large bunch of fresh basil leaves (at least 50g/2oz)
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 25 g (1oz) toasted pine nuts
  • 175 ml (6fl oz) olive or rapeseed oil
  • 50 g (2oz) freshly grated parmesan
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Chilli jam (makes 450ml)
  • 2 tblsp olive oil
  • 2 onions, roughly diced
  • 2 red peppers, cored, seeded and roughly diced
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 tblsp tomato purée
  • 50 g (2oz) light brown sugar
  • 4 ripe tomatoes, diced
  • 1 tblsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tblsp dark soy sauce
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. Sieve the flour into a large bowl with the salt and stir in the yeast. Make a well in the centre and pour in the tepid water and the oil. Mix to a smooth dough.
  2. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5–10 minutes, pushing and stretching until smooth and elastic. Alternatively, use a food mixer with the dough hook attached and set on a low speed – it saves quite a bit of elbow grease. Place in a large lightly oiled bowl. Cover with a clean cloth and leave in a warm place for 1 hour, until it has doubled in size.
  3. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F/gas 6).
  4. Knock the risen dough back, punching it lightly to knock out large air bubbles, and knead briefly on a lightly floured surface. Roll out the dough into a large rectangular shape with a rolling pin and place onto a Swiss roll tin that is 30cm x 23cm (12in x 9in) and preferably non-stick – if it isn’t, you’ll need to oil it lightly.
  5. Leave to rise in a warm place for another 10 minutes, until doubled in size, then using a palette knife, spread over the tomato sauce. Bake the pizza bread for 15 minutes, until cooked through and golden brown.
  6. Preheat the grill to a medium heat. Sprinkle the Cheddar cheese over the cooked pizza bread and place under the gill for about 5 minutes, until the cheese is melting and bubbling. Drizzle over the pesto and chilli jam and flash under the grill for another minute to just warm through. Carefully remove from the Swiss roll tin onto a breadboard and leave to cool a little.
  7. To serve, cut the warm pizza bread into squares and arrange in a bread basket.
Tomato sauce
  1. Heat the olive oil in a pan over a medium heat. Add in the onion and garlic and sauté for a few minutes, until softened but not coloured. Tip in the tomatoes with the vinegar, tomato purée and sugar. Cook on a low heat for a few minutes while stirring to help break down the tomatoes. Season to taste.
  2. Simmer gently for 25–30 minutes, until the sauce has reduced and dried out a little. Stir in the basil and use immediately or leave to cool, then transfer to a bowl and cover with clingfilm and chill until needed. Use as required.
Basil pesto
  1. Place the basil in a food processor with the garlic, pine nuts and a quarter of the oil. Blend to a paste, then slowly add the remaining oil through the feeder tube. Transfer to a bowl and fold in the Parmesan, then season to taste. Cover with clingfilm and chill until needed.
Chilli jam
  1. Heat the olive oil in a heavy-based pan on a medium heat. Add the onions, red peppers and garlic and sauté for 2 minutes, until just beginning to soften. Stir in the chilli and tomato purée and cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Stir in the sugar, tomatoes, balsamic vinegar and soy sauce and pour in 300ml (1/2 pint) of water to just cover. Simmer for 45–50 minutes, until well reduced and thickened, stirring occasionally.
  3. Remove the chilli jam from the heat and leave to cool completely, then tip into a food processor or liquidiser and blend to a purée. Pass through a sieve set over a bowl and season to taste. Transfer to a rigid plastic container and store in the fridge. Use as required.

Notes:

Neven's cooking ahead tips: The bread base covered with the tomato sauce can be baked and frozen in the tin. Simply defrost at room temperature for a couple of hours and then add the toppings and proceed as above. Tomato sauce will keep happily in the fridge for up to 1 week covered with clingfilm. 

The pesto will keep happily in the fridge for up to 1 week – just top it up with a little extra olive oil to keep it tasting lovely and fresh. It can also be frozen. The chilli jam keeps very well in the fridge for up to 3 weeks and can be put into a squeezy plastic bottle if you would like to use it to garnish plates. This can also be frozen.





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