November 3, 2007

Pizza and a milestone

I have been baking for a really long time. And I started baking with yeast only in the last 3 months. I've tried a variety of buns and breads and have been more successful than I thought I'd be.

Amma makes the yummiest pizza I've ever eaten. And I'm not the only one to think this. My best friend was visiting India for the first time in the 2.5 years since she moved to the U.S. A couple of weeks before she landed in Madras, we were on the phone with her and Amma asked her what she should make for her when she's here and she said, "Pizza" without thinking twice. Amma asked her, "Aren't you tired of eating Pizza there?" and she said, "But nothing is like what you make, Aunty!"

I'd never ventured to try and decided that eating Amma's pizza each time I visited my parents' place was more than enough. I do end up going at least 4 times a year so I can't really complain. (Even though this is at their dinner table every week.) But Amma was always asking me why I couldn't make this myself. I was scared of how it would turn out. And she'd say, "You make all kinds of bread, how can this intimidate you?" Anita also suggests that one can start baking breads with the easy pizza base. I finally summoned the courage to try this out last weekend. I started chopping vegetables to make pasta and halfway through decided to make pizza. I didn't have mushrooms in the fridge (it's usually a staple in our fridge, but when it is selling at Rs. 250 a kilo, I don't have the heart to use it as often!) and added whatever I could find. So, I did deviate a lot from Amma's original pizza sauce recipe. I'm not complaining!

For the dough:

1 1/2 cups Flour
1 tbsp Yeast
1/8 cup Oil
1/2 tbsp Sugar
3/4 tsp Salt
1/4 cup Water, boiling
1/4 cup Milk

For the sauce:

1 Onion, sliced
2-3 medium Tomatoes, chopped finely
1 Capsicum, sliced (I used small portions of red and yellow capsicum)
2 tsp Chilli Flakes
1/8 cup Broccoli, cut
1/8 cup Sweet Corn
1/8 cup Paneer, cubed
3 pods Garlic, finely chopped
1 tbsp Tomato Ketchup
1 tsp Sugar
1 tsp Oregano
1 tsp Fresh Parsley, finely chopped
1 tsp Fresh Basil, finely chopped
1/2 tsp Pepper
1/2 tsp Olive Oil
Salt to Taste

100g Mozzarella Cheese, grated
1 tsp Olive Oil

For the dough:

Take a huge mixing bowl and place the oil, salt and sugar in it. Add boiling water and mix until the sugar dissolves. Add the milk now to bring the mixture to room temperature. Add the yeast and mix well. Add the flour and knead into a dough. Place the dough in a greased vessel and cover it with a damp muslin cloth. Allow to rise until double in size (roughly 45-50 minutes).

For the sauce:

In a pan, heat the oil and add the garlic and onions. Fry for a minute or two. Add the capsicum, paneer, corn and broccoli and fry for 2-3 minutes. Add the parsley, basil, oregano, chilli flakes, salt, sugar and pepper and fry for another minute. Add the tomatoes and fry for 2-3 minutes. Add the ketchup and cook the mixture for a couple of minutes.

To Proceed:

Grease a pizza plate.

Spread the dough over the plate. (You could roll the dough using a rolling pin. I prefer doing this by hand.) Spread the olive oil over the dough. Spread enough sauce over the base. Sprinkle the cheese over the pizza.

Bake in a hot oven (400 F) for 20 minutes. When done, cut into wedges. Enjoy your meal.

This is a recipe I've been wanting to try and post for ages. It took 6 months of food blogging to get this very special recipe out. I just completed half a year of blogging and have all of you in the food blogosphere to thank for making a smooth sailing for me. Along with family and friends, you've all egged me on. Thank you all for your support and love.


Latha Narasimhan said...

Raaga dear, I am impressed with your pizza!:)) I have always bought the pizza base as good quality base is easily available. But nothing can beat the homemade ones!:) Can't believe you have been into baking only since 3 months! Your mothers recipe looks a sure success and I have decided to try this pizza base at home!:))
We have included you in the arusuvai chain without waiting for your nod!:) We will post a list of bloggers interested and you can choose who you want to send the ingredient! Please let me know if you come across any blogger who is interested in the chain.

Bindiya said...

Raaga ,this looks irressitible, wish I cud have a slice right now :)

Anonymous said...

After all those muffins and breads, we all think you are a pro! This is looking as good as it gets! beats store bought base and all pizzas hands down.

Siri said...

Congratulations raaga for completion of a successful half a year of blogging..:) and the pizza looks delish.. Can I have a bite please...:))

Rajitha said...

so..are you back on the regular blogging phase ( hope so ;)...and ince you start to make ur own pizza..bread is hard to go back to the store one..your pizza looks delish!!

sunita said...

Beautiful pizza...wouldn't mind a slice of that:)

Sreelu said...

Hey Raaga, Next time I visit Delhi girl I need to pay you a visit just to eat this:)
I am so drooling over it, I love home made pizza's you can make just the way u like rather being slathered with tomato paste.

Congrats on your mile stone ,wishing you many more to come

Manasi said...

Oh!! love the pizza!!
Congrats dear on completing 6 very successfl months of blogging!!! Look fwd to many many more!!!

Finla said...

Wow great looking pizza. I just had dinner but now that i have seen this pizza i am getting hungry. Yeah i know i know i am greedy.

Apple said...

Pizza looks so inviting raaga...My first pizza trail was a disaster..yours look great...

250Rs a kilo of mushrooms??? :O...they are cheaper here in the UK...

musical said...

Hey Raaga, Congratulations on the milestone! and that indeed a lovely pizza!

Kribha said...

Congrats dear on completing half a year of blogging. Pizza looks fabulous. I've always tried readymade bases only. Time to do it from scratch. Thanks for sharing your mom's recipe.

Suganya said...

Broccoli and sweet corn in the sauce.. this gotta be tasty. Your mom is a Super-Woman, Raaga :)

Suganya said...

And Congrats on yr 6-month milestone. It was good having you here, Raaga!

Srivalli said...

Raaga..that looks so heavenly...and congrats...expecting more from you!

Asha said...

Congratulations on the milestone and wish you many more Raaga!:))
Pizza looks great. Tushar just asked for Pizza 2 min ago!!:D
Happy Deepavali!

Cynthia said...

I'm always amazed and pleased when something turns out really well that I was intimidated about trying :)

Your pizza is great.

david santos said...

Raaga, My friend, Please!

Send an email to the Brazil embassj your country and repor the injustice that the brazilian courts are making with this girl

Thank you

The resignation is to stop the evolution. (David Santos in times without end)

David Santos

Srivalli said...

raaga..I wanted to have cakes as theme this month for you..then remembered that you said you are taking a break for a next month if you are blogging, will be cakes in microwave!

amna said...

looks lovely raaga.. congrats !!!

Aarti said...


Wowww...yummmmm.. that looks almost like ur mom's... hehe.. and i remember the tip i learnt on cooking the veggies before putting em on the base..(not made pizza in agesss)..

have a fun day girl.

Anonymous said...

Oh so this is the pizza!! Amma couldn't stop raving about it over phone - "Raaga pizza pathayo?" she kept asking me. :D - you mom stays in Chennai? :hint:

Raaga said...

@Latha: Thanks... home made base beats any store bought variety... waiting for your event to reach me.

@Bindiya:Come over.

@Anita: COming from you, it feels great.

@Siri: Thanks. Come over anytime... just give me an hour's notice :)

Raaga said...

@Rajitha: I sure hope so :)

@Sunita: Shall I send you some :-)

@Sreelu: Yeah, I agree... most places serve pizza with a sauce and then veggies strewn over the sauce...this way, the veggies give their flavours to the sauce :-)

@Manasi: Thanks :-)

@Happy: Anytime treat :-)

@Apple: fortunately, years of watching Amma make this has paid off and I am happy... do try it again and you'll soon be a pro.

Raaga said...

@Musical: Thanks :-) on both counts

@Kribha: I never used bases from outside, nor did we eat much pizza outside... I felt I'd be disrespecting my mom... this one is a keeper :)

@Suganya: those were my additions... but they did taste great.

Raaga said...

@Srivalli: Thanks :)I'll try to make a side dish in the MW now :)

@Asha: Shall I send a slice to Tushar? Thanks

@Cynthia: I agree :-)
@Nags: Thanks

@Aaroo: You have to try this... can't believe how it tastes just like hers.

@Lakshmi: Dinner tomorrow? I'll make this :-)

Nupur said...

Mom's pizzas rock!!! Congratulations on the milestone, and it is hard to believe it has bene only 6 months. you are such a prolific blogger!

Laksh said...

Wow! that looks good. Can't wait to try it out.

Namratha said...

Thanks for the lovely pizza dough recipe Raaga, I had been looking for a reliable one :) Pizza looks amazing, gooey with all that it! One question though, does the dough make one large pizza or 2? If its two how do I store the remaining dough?

Chitra said...


Tried the topping on Pizza for dinner. Bought the base and made the topping alone. It came out very well. I burnt the base a little bit but never mind..i wont repeat the mistake next time :)
Thanks to you once again ~ Hugs

Raks said...


I tried the recipe for base of the pizza,and the very first time it came out super dooper gud,better than pizza hut base I must say :)

Thanks a lot for the recipe...Going to post it in my blog,and hope you don't mind linking!

Any one can try this with confidence,its coming out perfect :)

Pankajalakshmi said...

Hi, I've been bookmarking this recipe ever since it was posted. Would definitely want to try it out.
Where do you get Fresh Basil and Parsley in Chennai? Have not been very successful at the local supermarkets. Thanks

Sandhya Shankarraman said...

I am new to baking as well as this blog and I must say I love how your pizza looks .. I followed the same steps and ingredients but my dough hasn't doubled in size.. I waited for almost 90 mins.. I live in the us and its cold here.. Also the milk was from the fridge.. But I boiled the water as mentioned.. Can u suggest what I should do next time to make it double in size?