Margherita Pizzas

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (February 2016) and taken from the book River Cottage Gluten Free written by Nutritionist, cook and River Cottage teacher Naomi Devlin.

This is a thin-based pizza, sparingly spread with a simple tomato sauce and baked until the base is invitingly crisp and the cheese is bubbling.

Margherita pizzaServes:  3-4

Ingredients for the Pizza Base:-

70g sorghum flour; 10g fresh yeast (or 3g quick dried)
140g potato starch
40g tapioca starch
25ml olive oil
1 large egg
1 scant tsp sea salt
1 tsp light Muscovado sugar
1 tsp xanthum gum or 2 tsp ground psyllium husk
1 tsp cider vinegar
Fine polenta or rice flour

Ingredients for the Topping:

400g tin plum tomatoes
2-3 fat garlic cloves, finely chopped
50ml olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
Few drops wine vinegar (optional)
2-3 mozzarella balls, each about 125g
Thyme, or oregano leaves for sprinkling (optional)
Rocket leaves and Parmesan shavings

Step One: For the pizza base, mix the sorghum flour, yeast and 120g tepid water in a bowl until smooth, then cover.  Set aside at room temperature for an hour to ferment.

Step Two: For the tomato sauce, chop the tomatoes and put in a pan with the juice from the tin.  Add the garlic and cook, covered, over a medium heat, for 10 minutes.  Stir in the olive oil, a couple of pinches of salt, a few good grinds of pepper, a pinch of sugar and a little vinegar if you think the flavour needs lifting.  The oil will take a bit of stirring to get it to emulsify with the tomato.  If the sauce is too thin, cook uncovered for a few minutes.  Set aside to cool.

Step Three: When you are ready to make the dough, beat the remaining pizza base ingredients, except the polenta or rice flour, into the sorghum mixture, until smooth.

Step Four:  Sprinkle flat baking sheets and work-surface with fine polenta or rice flour.  Scoop up a quarter of the dough with floured fingers, roll into a ball, then roll out on your floured surface into a thin circle, about 5mm thick.  Pick up an edge gently and slide a floured rolling pin underneath to help you transfer the delicate dough to the baking sheet.  Repeat with the rest of the dough.

Step Five:  Spread the sauce between the pizzas using the back of a spoon.  Slice mozzarella and lay on top.  Sprinkle with thyme or oregano and drizzle any exposed dough with a little olive oil.  Leave to rise at room temperature for about 1 hour, until the dough looks puffy.  Preheat the oven to 250oC /Fan 230oC/Gas 10, or as high as it will go and bake for 6-8 minutes.  Add rocket and Parmesan, and serve.

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