May 27, 2015

Spelt Pizza Crust with a Slow Cooked Beef and Tomato Sauce

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Crust Ingredients:
3 cups wholegrain spelt flour (plus extra for dusting your kneading surface)
1 1/4 cups warm but not hot water
2 tsp dry active yeast
1 tsp pressed garlic
1 tsp oregano
Salt and Pepper
2 tbsp olive oil (plus extra for brushing dough)
1 tbsp honey

For the sauce:
1 small can of tomato puree
1/2 tsp oregano
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 red onion, shredded
1 Zucchini, finely shredded
2-3 carrots, finely shredded
1/2-1 cup good stock
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 pound organic grass fed ground beef

Start by making the dough, mix all of the ingredients together in a large bowl until they just come together in a rough ball.  Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it for about 10 minutes, until the texture changes and it becomes elastic.  You can add more flour as you need to it doesn’t stick to your surface.

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Before and after the rise

Drizzle some olive oil on the ball of dough then turn it over so it’s coated and won’t stick as it rises.  Then cover the bowl with a wet clean dish cloth and let it sit in a warm place until it’s doubled in size (about 1-2 hours).  This is when I started my slow cooked sauce, but the recipe is below the pizza.

(Note: You can now roll out the dough and go but I like to do a second rise).  Punch down the dough and split it in two, then knead each one until you get that smooth elastic texture again.  Oil each one and set them in separate bowls or on an oiled board. (Each one will make one pizza) Leave them be again for another hour or until you’re ready to go.  (They can be refrigerated for hours at this point.  If you make the dough at night for the next night just pop it in the fridge, press it down in the morning, make a ball again and put it back and it will be perfect for dinner!)

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Dough ready for the second rise, and the slow cooked sauce.

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Covered with a damp dish cloth for a second rise.

For the sauce: 

This really is so simple.  Splash a tbsp of oil in a pan on a medium heat and cook the onion, throw in the meat and braise it (till its browned.)  Add in the garlic and shredded veggies and continue to cook, stirring regularly.  In a separate bowl whisk all the remaining ingredients until combined then add to the skillet.  Stir until it’s combined then cover and simmer on a low heat for an hour to an hour and a half, checking in periodically to stir.  If it’s too liquidy at the end, cook uncovered for 10 minutes and it it becomes too thick, add a little more stock.  It’s amazing how much flavour develops over an hour! Split the sauce in two for the two pizzas.

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 Assembly! Preheat the oven to 400F and roll out the pizza dough on a well floured surface or directly on a baking sheet.  Add on the sauce, and any cheese you want and pop it in the oven for 10 minutes or until the crust is crisp and the cheese is bubbling. Bon appetite.

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