Overcoming the fear of yeast and home made pizza

So I finally overcame my phobia of yeast. The little fungi in the jar used to creep me out, let alone adding it to something that I would eventually eat. But as long as I didn’t see or participate in the process, I was fine with the end products.

And then one day, I bit the bullet and bought a jar of instant dry yeast. They are so TINY, and looked relatively harmless. So it began, a love affair with home made pizzas. It is a lot easier to make pizza from scratch than you think. Store-bought pizza bases are never good, they are usually just ‘doughy’ and not crispy.

This is the recipe that I use, but instead of just kneading the dough, I covered it with a moist tea towel and let it sit for about an hour or two. The result was much better than if you had just used the dough straight away. And oh yeah, it involves yeast, a whole 8g of it.

I usually use the whole dough, and just roll it out roughly first. Then I spread a little olive oil on a rimmed cookie sheet, and use my fingers to pull the dough out until it evenly covers the sheet.

This particular pizza had a tomato paste base, roast chicken, sliced tomato and mushrooms, sundried tomatoes and cheese. Yummilicious 🙂

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My Sangria

I love Sangria. I keep telling myself that it’s healthier than most cocktails, and definitely alcopops. We buy red wine but somehow never manage to finish the whole bottle before it’s not so ‘fresh’ anymore. So Sangria is the perfect option for leftover red wine.

My version of Sangria

1 apple
1 valencia orange
1 lemon or lime
2 parts red wine (but please don’t use any of the sweet stuff)
1 part soda water
1 part orange juice
sugar to taste

Dice apple and slice orange, put the fruits in a tall jug. Squeeze the lemon or lime and pore juice into a jug.  Add wine, soda water and orange juice. Sprinkle in sugar (I prefer vanilla sugar but any sugar will do). Or if you want to ensure that the sugar melts properly, melt the sugar first with warm water and cool before you put the syrup into the jug. Add ice or just leave the jug to chill inside the fridge. It tastes great the day after.