wonders of making dough...

Oh, I've never made bread or pizza before and I've tried both in the past two days.  The outcome?  IT WAS GOOD! :) Yeah, I must admit that I am quite happy with the outcome.  And yes, it really wasn't so hard at all.  I'm so glad that I've made these attempts because the experience changed my entire attitude toward home cooking.  Not only I would try to make more of my own bread and pizza, I'm gaining more confident as well.   

I got my flatbread recipe on Food52 and pizza recipe on Jamie Oliver's site.  Both recipes provided extremely easy-to-follow steps.  I personally think that it makes a huge difference when the source is written in a motivating manner.  Their words were definitely helpful and gave me the urge to try.  :) So I'm pretty thankful that I had some real awesome food these past two days.  It's wonderful.  

Here is the recipe for the grilled flatbread only: 

Servings: 6-8 palm size flatbread

Preparation Time: 10-15 minutes

Cooking Time: 15 minutes for the entire batch

Ingredients: 

3 cups bread flour 

1 tsp yeast

1 tsp salt 

1 1/4 cups warm water

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil + 2-3 tbsp extra for brushing the dough

1 tbsp sea salt for finishing

2 tbsp dry rosemary leaves for finishing

Instructions: 

1) Get a large bowl, whisk the flour and combine with salt and yeast.  Mix well. 

2) Make a well in the center, pour water and oil.  Mix together with a  wooden spoon in a circular motion until the mixture turns to a dough mass.  

3) Spread a half handful of flour on a work surface, start to knead the dough until it turns to a smooth ball. This took around 5-7 minutes.  Spread a little more flour if the surface gets dry up and the dough starts sticking to the surface.  

4) Add a drizzle of oil to the large bowl, put the dough back in and cover the bowl with a plastic wrap or damp kitchen towel.  Place the bowl at a warm place and let the dough rise for about 30-40 minutes.  I left it at my balcony because it is quite warm during the day here in Hong Kong.  

5) After the dough is ready, divide the dough into 6-8 flatbread (flatten/stretch each smaller dough to whatever shape you like) and sprinkle a bit of rosemary on top.  

6) Preheat a grill pan with a little oil on medium heat, start grilling each flatbread.  Each takes about 3-5 minutes.  Sprinkle a little bit of sea salt before serving.  

I used these flatbread to make a nice brunch the other day. :) 

This pizza dough recipe is from Jamie Oliver's website.  Click here to go to his recipe.  

Recipe for my tomato sauce : 

Ingredients: 

 1/2 onion, finely chopped

1 garlic clove

1/2 chili, finely chopped

1 bay leaf

1 can chopped tomato

extra-virgin olive oil

Instructions: 

1) Preheat a saucepan with oil on medium low heat, cook onion for 3 minutes, add garlic and chili, cook 1-2 minutes.  

2) Add chopped tomato and bay leaf.  Cook 1-2 minutes then reduce heat to simmer 8-10 minutes with a lid on.  

3) Use a potato masher to mash the sauce.  This sauce is used to smear on each pizza dough before adding whatever toppings you desire. Enjoy!! :)