Spanish Pizza

I have been neglecting blogging with work. Now that I have completed almost five years at my workplace, I am one of the senior staff who are consulted in various decision making. While it is an honor, sometimes it does become taxing and stressful. Hence, I prefer to relax and play some Candy Crush when I come home. On a side note, as I write this, I am stuck at 678th level, where have you reached in this simple yet strategic game?

I bought some new cookbooks from Karachi International Book Fair 2014. These books are really pretty and most of the stuff can be easily made, or adapted slightly (like omitting the alcohol factor or changing the non halal meat to halal meat options for Muslims).

I  made this Spanish pizza from the book named “Tapas”. Tapas are Spanish finger food. These bite sized delicacies can be served before lunch or as an evening snack. Or they can be an accompaniment with gossip in a gathering with friends. Spanish food overlaps with the Mediterranean cuisine because of the similarity of flavors.

This version of pizza is not heavy, as it does not have any cheese. I did not make many small round pizzas. I did one plate, but since it was for my family, I made one large rectangular pizza and then cut it into slices. It is alright to do so when making it only for family.

When I will be making making these for guests, I would make individual small pizzas, the reason being the sauce makes the center part of a large pizza soggy in a little while, on the other hand, small pizzas do not become soggy. This pizza is rolled thinner than the traditional pizza, which makes it slightly crisp, preventing the sogginess.

The recipe called for a 400 gm can of tomatoes, which I replaced with 400 gm of fresh tomatoes.

2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
400 gm tomatoes, roughly chopped
125 gm spinach leaves
salt , to taste
Black pepper, to taste
2 tbsp pine nuts, roasted
4 tbsp warm water
1/2 tsp active dry yeast
pinch of sugar
220 gm flour
1/2 tsp salt
Extra olive oil
Sprinkle the yeast and sugar on warm water and leave for 10 – 15 minutes or until frothy in a warm place.  
In a large bowl mix flour and salt. Make a well in the center and pour the yeast water. Start kneading the dough, adding more water if required. Knead the dough until smooth and elastic. Set aside in a bowl in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
In a pan, heat olive oil. Add the onions. Sauté until soft. Add the garlic, and sauté until aromatic. Stir in the tomatoes. Add salt and black pepper. Add half a cup of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook until tomatoes are cooked through. Break the tomatoes with a potato masher. Cook until the sauce has a thick consistency.
Add the spinach leaves and ccok until the leaves have wilted. Taste and adjust seasoning. Set aside to cool.
Preheat oven to 200C/ 425 F.
Roll out the pizza dough in a thin circle. Use a 6 cm round cutter to cut small pizzas. Place in a greased baking dish. Put some sauce on all of the circles. Sprinkle pine nuts. Drizzle olive oil on the pizzas. Bake for 12 – 15 minutes or until the pizzas are golden on the underside. Serve warm. 
Happy Baking!!!



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