Ah, pizza. Perhaps the food we as gluten-avoiders miss the most. Thankfully, with this tasty recipe, you can make the perfect pizza base in the comfort of your own home. Swap out the toppings to create other classics if you prefer, but this Sicilian vegetable version is delicious!
This pizza recipe is so versatile – copy exactly for a fresh Sicilian-style version, or swap out the toppings to make your favourite classics!
For the dough:
- 250 ml milk of choice (unsweetened if non-dairy)
- 1 x 7 g sachet of dried yeast
- 2 1/2 tsp sugar
- 400 g gluten-free bread flour plus extra for dusting
- 1 tsp sea salt flakes
- 1 tbsp flax seeds
- 3 tbsp hot water
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 2 tsp cider vinegar
For the tomato sauce:
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 tsp asafoetida
- 1/2 tsp dried red chilli or to taste
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tin of whole plum tomatoes in juice or 500ml passata
- Pinch of sugar
For the topping:
- olive oil for frying
- 2 medium aubergines
- 1 yellow pepper
- 2 tbsp capers in brine
- 60 g green olives stones in
- 20 g parsley
For the dough:
Warm the milk in a small pan or in the microwave until lukewarm. Place 50ml (13⁄4fl oz) of the milk in a jug with the yeast and sugar and mix well. Set aside for a few minutes until the mixture starts to bubble. (TIP: It is important not to heat the milk too much, otherwise it will be too hot for the yeast. Luke warm is ideal: just under body temperature.)
Place the flaxseeds into a small bowl and add the water. Mix well and allow to stand for at least 5 minutes.
In a jug, combine the flax mixture, olive oil and the remaining milk. Sieve the flour and salt into a large bowl and make a well in the middle. Pour the flax mixture into the well along with the yeast mixture. Gently mix together with a fork until a smooth dough is formed.
In a small cup, combine the bicarb and vinegar and quickly knead into the dough.
Oil 2 large flat, thin baking sheets. Cut the dough in half and roll out into two large rectangles, approximately 1-2cm (1⁄2-3⁄4in) thick. Place the rolled- out dough onto the oiled baking sheets, cover with a damp tea towel and leave to prove in a warm place for around 1 hour. The dough will increase in size.
For the rich tomato sauce:
While the dough is proving, warm the olive oil in a pan and add the asafoetida. Heat gently for a minute or so.
Add the dried oregano and chilli and gently fry for 1-2 minutes.
Add the tin of whole plum tomatoes and juice (or passata). Stir gently to mix, then simmer gently for 45-50 minutes. The sauce will reduce and thicken.
Take the tomato sauce off the heat and (if you used plum tomatoes) either use a hand blender to break down the tomatoes or by hand with a wooden spoon. Add a pinch of sugar, stir well and allow to cool.
For the topping:
Slice the aubergine into finger-thick slices.
In a large frying pan, add olive oil to a depth of about 1cm (1⁄2in) and warm gently.
Once the oil is hot, add the aubergine slices and cook until golden brown on both sides. The aubergine will become soft and unctuous. Remove from the pan and drain on kitchen paper.
Slice the peppers into long strips and add to the hot oil, cooking until lightly browned. Remove from the pan and drain on kitchen paper.
For the assembly:
Preheat the oven to 220oC/Gas Mark 7.
And the cooled sauce to the proved base. Allow a border of around 2cm (1in) around the sauce.
Decorate the pizza bases with the aubergine, peppers, capers, olives and parsley – however you choose. Finish with seasoning and a drizzle of olive oil.
Bake the pizzas in the oven for 10-12 minutes or until golden and crisp. Slice and serve.