I didn't know taking over a restaurant for a night to make copious pizza and have drinks under the festoon lights of the laneway could be SUCH FUN!
Our Pizza Making Crafternoon was awesome- Bruach taught us everything he knew about wood-fired and electric pizza ovens, dough, cooking techniques and even pizza paddles, pizza cutters, and topping combinations (the sauce recipe is staying a closely guarded secret however). There was such a great group of participants too- thanks everyone for coming!
Once everyone had their welcome drink, we started with an intro to pizza-making then had a behind-the-scenes tour of the kitchen so everyone could wash their hands and see the industrial rotating stone-floor pizza oven they use for their popular pizzas. We then had a demonstration of how to prepare the dough balls and make them into pizza bases using only our hands (rolling pins are less authentic), add just a smidgen of sauce and a scattering of good quality ingredients. Everyone made at least one creation themselves, then we learnt how to make dessert pizzas served with vanilla ice-cream (it's all about par-baking the base so the chocolate doesn't burn!)
I quickly learnt that you need to keep an eye on your pizzas as wood-fired ovens are deceptively hot, and one edge will burn if left unattended for more than a couple of minutes! Our creations were still delicious though and everyone chose different toppings and extras; thinly sliced potato with rosemary, Shaw River buffalo mozzarella and finished with sour cream... pesto sauce with roast pumpkin and sun-blushed tomato with mozzarella... meat feast with olives and fresh rocket... the classic margherita was probably the most popular though!
Bruach's pizza recipe is based on jamie Oliver's with a few changes to make it really simple and easy to follow. Here it is-
Roxburgh Pizza Recipe
2kg bakers flour
1 litre cold water
2 tablespoons caster sugar
1x pinch salt
8 tablespoons of olive oil.
Add yeast, oil and sugar to water and mix.
Allow yeast to activate for 10 mins.
Add salt to flour and mix in.
Combine wet ingredients into bowl with flour and mix for 15 minutes.
Cover and allow to rise at room temperature.
Weigh into portions and roll out pizza balls.
Form into pizza bases, top with delicious ingredients
Bake in a pizza oven until the base is cooked and the cheese melted!
The next crafternoon we're back to our usually crafty territory, this time learning al things FELT in a special workshop with textile artist Lucy Stocks from Portland, who brings her Russian heritage and love of felting to Hamilton on Sun 27 May.
Read all about the workshop HERE!