For the first time in weeks we had a free weekend at home. For us that could only mean three things; Wine, pizza and movies. I visited my mother in Portugal a couple of weeks ago and brought back queijo curado (a hard, salty cheese, creamy in colour and texture) and black pig chouriço (a lesser known spicy sausage equal in taste to the Spanish varieties). Along with the cheese and chouriço, we decided on toppings of piri piri chicken, olives, onions, peppers and obligatory egg. We also made the tomato sauce slightly piquant.
We have recently got into the “habit” of making pizzas at home, which are by far superior to take-aways or store bought. Incidentally, making a pizza after a hard day in the office or with the kids is a great stress reliever / fun.
Portuguese style pizza from scratch
- Prep time:
- Cook time:
- Total time:
- Makes: 2 x 12" thin crust pizzas
Ingredients for the pizza dough for two pizzas
- 250g strong white flour plus more for dusting
- 1/2 sachet of dried fast action yeast
- 150ml tepid water
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated white sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoon olive oil
Topping ingredients for two pizzas
- 2 chicken thighs
- 2 tablespoons piri-piri marinade
- 50g Portuguese chourico
- 60g Portuguese mature cheese shaved or grated
- 1/2 medium red pepper, sliced
- 1/2 medium green pepper, sliced
- 200g tinned tomatoes
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 piri-piri chilies
- A handful of chopped parsley
- Pinch of salt
- Black pepper
- 2 eggs
- Score each of the chicken thighs three times on the fleshier side. Mix together with the piri-piri marinade, cover and leave in the fridge for a couple of hours
- To make the dough, empty the sachet of yeast into a cup with the sugar and half of the water and leave for 10 minutes.
- Whilst the yeast begins to activate, add the flour to a mixing bowl with the salt and form a well in the middle.
- Empty the activated yeast into the well and use a wooden spoon to start mixing together with the flour. Continue to do this, adding the remainder of the water a bit at a time.
- Empty the dough onto a floured surface, dust your hands with flour and knead the dough well for 10 minutes. Add more flour to the surface you are kneading on if it becomes too sticky.
- Add a little bit of olive oil to the bottom of a suitably sized bow and put in the kneaded dough. Cover with cling film and leave in a warm place for an hour until it doubles in size.
- After the chicken has been marinading for at least 45 minutes, preheat the oven to 200C or gas mark 5. Cook the chicken for 25 minutes on a rack in the oven so excess fat can easily drip off whilst cooking.
- To make the sauce, empty the tinned tomatoes with the juice into a suitable pan on a gentle heat. Add the garlic, chilies, a pinch of salt and ground black pepper and simmer for 5 minutes. Use a hand blender to whiz the sauce so that it becomes a nice even consistency.
- Take the dough out after it has doubled in size (depending on how warm the place where you left it was) and cut into two equally sized pieces. Use a rolling pin to each piece to as uniform a shape as you can and it must be about on average 4 to 5 mm thick. It doesn't need to be circular, this is a rustic pizza so taste is the key this time.
- Roll the dough up around your rolling pin and use it to lay it back over a floured baking sheet you'll be cooking the pizza on.
- Construct the pizza by first adding a layer of the sauce but try not to put on too much. Cut the chicken thigh meat into chunks discarding the left over bones and skin.
- Add the peppers, sliced chourico, onion and cheese evenly over the pizza leaving a space in the middle to crack an egg before transferring to the oven
- Cook for 10 minutes or until the edge of the crust becomes golden the remove from the oven and sprinkle over with chopped parley and serve immediately.
With massive Portuguese pizza, glass of vinho tinto and “Shutter Island” we had the perfect, chilled out Saturday evening.
|Wine Paring||Quinta do Carmo Dom Martinho, 2000
(Not widely available in the UK - sorry!)
Ripe fruits with notes of black cherry. Peppery feel in the mouth with sweet tannins and a smooth but lingering finish.