Funny how sometimes it’s your own laziness which can lead you in an interesting direction.
I knocked up some ‘biga’ last night in preparation for making individual pizzas today, for tonight’s evening meal. When it came to mixing the final dough, although I had (I thought) carefully aimed for 65% hydration – which should mean a floppy, but not too wet dough – it appeared to have other ideas, almost a mind of its own, at least in terms of how loose it was going to be.
“Errrr… dough this wet is going to be a handful to make into individual pizzas” was more or less the thought going through my head.
“Ok, let’s do tray-bake pizza” was the obvious answer. But not with all the sauce and toppings dumped uncerimoniously onto uncooked dough – let’s par-bake the dough, a bit like focaccia, first, then top it and continue baking.
Thus it came to pass. Focaccia pizza was created, and it was good. Oh yes, I am even now trying to think of an excuse why we have to have it again next weekend (and I’m not even in the country next weekend!), that’s how nice it was.
For your viewing pleasure, I present a run-down of the steps involved in assembling your focaccia pizza. Start with a well-proved wet dough (you could go up to about 75% hydration I reckon, and it should work fine).
This goes into a pre-heated oven as hot as you can get it (I use the non-fan setting, to try and reduce drying-out of the surface, plus it goes hotter than the fan setting):
After maybe 7 mins, take the par-baked base out, which has already expanded and puffed up nicely:
Tomato sauce is going to be first onto the base, here’s one we made earlier:
Followed by toppings:
Put it all together (cheese going on last) and whaddya got:
8 more minutes back in the hot oven and she’s done:
Cut up, and devour.
Finally, just a word from our sponsors (who contributed to a small degree to making the sauce):