"I love pizza, but I especially love cold left-over pizza for breakfast when I am feeling a little seedy after a big night. I'm not talking about leftovers here, though. I am talking about a dedicated fresh pizza made especially for breakfast. Toppings are up to you but here's my ultimate breakfast suggestion. Now we're talking.
"Plan this well in advance, to give your pizza dough plenty of time to prove in the fridge. A slow and cold prove slows down fermentation, resulting in a better texture and flavour. Get yourself an inexpensive pizza stone from a kitchenware store and pop it into your oven for an authentic ‘cooked in a pizza restaurant' result." - Darren Purchese.
1 pizza (serves 2), plus 1 extra base for freezing
250g strong (baker's) flour
1/2 tsp active dried yeast
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbs olive oil and canola oil spray
2 pork sausages
150g pizza sauce
6 cherry tomatoes, halved
300g fresh buffalo mozzarella
4 thin slices prosciutto
Small basil leaves, to serve
Chilli oil or olive oil, to serve
Freshly ground black pepper
Make the dough 2 days in advance.
Put the flour, water, yeast and salt in the bowl of a free-standing electric mixer and attach the dough hook. Mix on low speed for 1 minute, then increase the speed to medium and mix for a further 5 minutes. Turn the machine off and leave the dough to rest for 5 minutes.
Turn the machine back on to medium and mix again. Add the olive oil and continue mixing for a further 5 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic. Remove the dough from the mixing bowl and transfer it into a clean bowl. Lightly spray the surface of the dough with oil spray. Lay plastic wrap over the top of the dough and leave it to rest and prove in a warm place for 30 minutes.
Line a tray with baking paper. Knockback the dough in the bowl by gently pushing it down with your knuckles. Transfer the dough to a very lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough into two equal pieces and roll each one into a ball.
Place the dough balls on the prepared tray and lightly spray the surface of each ball with oil spray. Lay plastic wrap over the top of the dough to cover, then place the dough in the fridge for 2 nights.
Making the Pizza:
On the second morning, remove the dough from the fridge and leave in a warm place to prove and double in size. Pre-heat your oven (and pizza stone, if using) to 220 C, without the fan.
Take a ball of dough, place it on a lightly floured work surface and gently knock it back again. Gently push and press the dough using the bottom of your palm to form a round shape, about 24cm in diameter, lifting the dough every now and then to stop it sticking. Lift up the base again and flick some flour underneath before assembly.
Use a knife to cut the casing from the sausages and crumble the meat into a bowl with your fingers. Crack the eggs into two small bowls.
Top the pizza base with the pizza sauce, spreading it out evenly to cover. Add the crumbled sausage and tomato halves, then tear the mozzarella onto the pizza.
Use a floured paddle to transfer the pizza to the pizza stone in the oven. Top the pizza with the two eggs and shut the door quickly. Cook for 6–7 minutes, then remove from the oven and transfer to a plate.
Scatter some prosciutto and basil over the pizza and drizzle over some chilli oil or olive oil. Crack some black pepper over the top and serve immediately.
Prepare and cook the remaining dough portion in the same way, but without the topping, then freeze it so you have a base ready for next time.
Credits: This is an edited extract from Chefs Eat Breakfast Too by Darren Purchese published by Hardie Grant Books $29.99 and is available where all good books are sold.
Photo Credits: © Ari Hatzis, Elisa Watson.