Sunday, October 17, 2010

Veggie Garam Masala Pizza with Homemade Whole Wheat Base




This is not your regular Pizza Hut style pizza. But it is my most favourite pizza recipe in the whole world. That's because this is the pizza that I've been eating since I was a little girl. My Amma (mother) used to make it very often and my friends loved it too. Some of them still remember the 'Pizza Party' we had several times at my place where Amma and Pachi (aunt) would whip up these delcious pizzas by the dozen.

We would get the base from some local bakeries and if the base was not available, how disspointed we would be! Those were times when Dominos was the only famous pizza joint in M'lore and paying a large sum of money for a pizza seemed downright stupid!

Even now when I travel to M'lore I look forward to eating these yummy pizzas made by my mother. She got this recipe from her sister, Nandini Pachi.

My previous endeavours with baking bread - the crescent rolls and the jeera bread - left me overjoyed. I thought of using this experience to make a whole wheat pizza base. A healthy pizza base with my favorite Indian-style topping on it, what more could I ask for! Cheese of course.



The Topping
Ingredients :
1 to 2 tbsp ghee/ butter
12 garlic cloves
2 medium onions
2 tsp chilly powder
1/4 tsp pepper powder
1 large tomato
2 tsp garam masala powder
1 1/2 cups finely chopped green beans
1 1/2 cups finely chopped carrots
3 tbsp tomato ketchup
2 tsp maida (all purpose flour)
1/2 cup water
1/4 tsp sugar
Coriander leaves
Grated mozzarella cheese

[Note : You could add mushrooms, corn, capsicum, olives, jalapeños etc to make it more colourful. Here, I have stuck to my mom's recipe].


Method :
Chop onions fine. Crush garlic. I like to use the garlic peel as well, but you can discard them. 
Boil carrots and beans in the microwave for 4 to 5 minutes with just a few tablespoons of water, mixing once or twice in between. The vegetables should be crunchy to the bite and not overcooked. [The beans may be a bit raw at this stage but will be taken care of later].

Heat ghee/ butter. Add the crushed garlic and roast till they turn brownish and exude a garlicky smell. Sauté onions till they turn translucent. Add chilly powder, black pepper powder and stir well. Add tomatoes and roast till they are completely cooked. Sprinkle garam masala powder and roast for a couple more minutes. Add the vegetables and roast till they are cooked but crunchy. Pour in tomato ketchup and mix well. To thicken the sauce, mix 2 tsp maida (all purpose flour) with water and add. Bring to a soft boil. Add sugar, salt and coriander leaves and mix well.




The Base 
Ingredients:
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast (1 packet)
1/4 cup warm water (100ºF to 110ºF)
1/2 tsp sugar
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (atta)
2 tbsp olive oil
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp garlic powder
3/4 cup water (+ a few tsp)

Combine sugar and 1/4 cup warm water . Add yeast, mix gently and leave aside for 5 to 10 minutes, till it foams.
In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, oil, water, garlic powder and yeast mixture and knead for a few minutes to form a smooth dough. If it is too dry and stiff, add a few tsp of water. If it turns too sticky, add some more flour and knead well. [It should be very slightly sticky.]
Transfer the dough into a large bowl greased with oil, turning the dough around, till it is well coated with oil.



Cover with a plastic wrap or a towel. Keep aside for an hour to hour and a half, till the dough doubles in size. It will be light and airy.

Punch the dough to deflate it and divide it into 3 equal portions.  [I was so excited about the whole thing I completely forgot to take pictures. If you want to see how much the dough increases and how to roll it, refer my earlier posts here and here]

Preheat the oven to 425ºF.

I remembered seeing a pizza stone being used to bake the dough in some cookery show sometime back. So I read up a little bit on it. However, I don't have a pizza stone, so I used what I thought was the next best thing - a cookie sheet [baking tray used to bake cookies]. Place the (ungreased) cookie sheet into the preheated oven for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, dust a large cutting board or a clean countertop with a little bit of flour. Roll one portion of the dough into a big circle (5 to 6") in diameter. [I couldn't manage to get a  perfect round. So I overturned a round plate on it to cut out a circle. I gently pressed the edges of the circle].

Transfer the base onto a parchment paper. With a fork, gently poke a few holes into the base like so :




Take the cookie sheet out of the oven and transfer the pizza base along with the parchement paper onto the cookie sheet.


Bake at 425ºF for 5 minutes. Take the entire cookie sheet out. Liberally spread the topping on the baked pizza base.




Spread grated mozarella cheese on top. This is where homemade pizza has an advantage - you can add only as much cheese as you want.


Return to the oven and bake at 425ºF  for another 5 minutes. Repeat with the other two portions.

[If you don't have an oven and use a ready made pizza base, just heat oil on the tawa, roast the pizza covered till the bottom of the base browns up. Microwave for 15s so that the cheese melts all over].

 This entire five minutes, my nose was stuck to the oven door and I was enjoying every second watching the cheese slowly melt into the sizzling sauce. Divine!


And for the next few minutes I was pacing up and down waiting for the pizza to cool down a little so I could devour it! Burned my tongue in the process, but who really cares!


Comments:


52 comments:

  1. beautifully prepared pizza, love it

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  2. hi Aparna,
    pizza looks super delicious ...i can't wait to try this yummy pizza with such a delicious topping n the best part is the base is whole wheat ..yummy

    Satya
    http://www.superyummyrecipes.com

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  3. Hey Aparna.. cute post.. I agree about the "Mom's pizza" feeling. Love that you have green beans in this! Bon apetit!

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  4. Pizza looks too tempting!!...Love the wonderful memories of mother`s cooking...

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  5. I remember these treats!! :D YUM!! Awesome memories eating slice after slice after slice as fast as San Mai and Hodi Mai could make them hehe! Glad to see this entry, delicious looking pizza!

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  6. Yummy pizza,love the indian twist in it...would love to try it soon..

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  7. Hi Aparna,

    That's a great job well done dear...can i have a slice of that!!:)

    Dr.Sameena@

    www.myeasytocookrecipes.blogspot.com

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  8. Hey Ap, I can sense ur nostalgia !! I remember those dys..had learnt frm ur mom and tried many times and fun part is i used to think this is the only way a pizza tasted :D
    Now tht just 2 dys back had the REAL Pizza tht too ..3 slices back to back and within mins felt guilty worrying abt calories :(
    Looks like u sensed my dillemna and shwd me a healthy way ..yippeee ..thankuuu..will try ..but tell me can i freeze the base for future use ?if yes how long can it be frozen ?

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  9. yummy and healthy pizza,luks fantastic.Love the new luks of ur blog.Very nice.

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  10. healthy and drooling pizza..love it Aparna dear..

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  11. cant wait to try it. I tried to make a ww base but was never successful. Bookmarked.

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  12. Very innovative indianised pizza.Love the whole meal base so much healthier than refined flour.Looks scrumpticious.

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  13. Wow wat a beautiful looking pizza, love this Indianized pizza,looks sooooo cheesy and tempting!

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  14. hi aparna!
    the topping takes the cake !!! wow, droolworthy. my daughter saw the pic and is behind me to make it asap..... keep it up !

    Priya
    http://eq-myblog.blogspot.com/

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  15. Lovley post and a beautiful looking pizza.

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  16. yummy piza looking delicious i bookmark it try it

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  17. Looks Yummy ! Will defenitely try!

    Vrindakka

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  18. Nice post dear..pizza looks really good..tempting

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  19. @Jyothekka,
    I haven't tried freezing the base, but I'm sure you can. Will check on that and let you know.

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  20. Veggie garam masala pizza looks delicious. Nice one.

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  21. That's quite an unusual topping, but looks very delicious with the Indian touch.

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  22. I loved this indo-italian fusion pizza! Looks so tempting!

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  23. delicious addition of whole wheat
    I make the topping similar

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  24. Very unusual pizza indeed, but I must tell you that I love pizza. This would be another challenge for me.

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  25. Pizza looks so delicious Aparna...am trying it today n delight my kids..

    Tasty Appetite

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  26. thank you for linking Aparna this delicious pizza

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  27. very neat and lovely pizza..yum !

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  28. Wow, this looks amazing! It is absolutely packed to the rim with that gorgeous topping. I can almost smell it from here :D

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  29. What nice flavors. It's so fun to be able to try new things. Thanks for a great recipe.

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  30. So nice to make a home made healthy whole wheat pizza base. Not to mention the varieties of topping flavors that can be dished up. Looks delicious !

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  31. We are huge pizza eaters at my house and I am always looking for the perfect crust - I have never poked holes in mine - I bet that really makes a difference. Your pizza is so full of delicious Indian flavors - well done! thanks for sharing this with us at the hearth and soul hop!

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  32. Awesome desi pizza..love your yummy topping recipe..
    Thanks a lot for linking this to bookmarked event.

    US Masala

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  33. an award for you
    http://torviewtoronto.blogspot.com/p/awards-and-publications.html

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  34. can i have a slice.....yummy looking homemade pizza.Apy thx for telling me dat my tikka pics were not being seen have sorted it.....take care,
    love and hugs.
    Biny

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  35. That pizza looks wonderful! Stopping by from the H 'n S Blog Hop.

    Wendy
    Around My Family Table

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  36. Oh Yum! This looks absolutely fantastic! What amazing flavor combos in a pizza!

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  37. Pizza with indian toppings looks awesome....lovely

    Pushpa @ simplehomefood.com

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  38. I love pizza - and I really like the idea of all those wonderful Indian flavours on top!
    Sue

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  39. Looks healthy and delicious pizzaaa!

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  40. I have an ward waiting for u in my blog...Do drop in to collect it... :)

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  41. What a wonderful idea for a pizza. This looks delicious. Thank you for linking up at Vegetarian Foodie Fridays!

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  42. I made this tonight and it was delicious. My husband thought it was such a nice treat. I will be featuring this on Vegetarian Foodie Fridays next week!

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  43. I love veggie pizza. The garam masala sounds like it would add a really nice flavor to the pizza.

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  44. This pizza is indeed delicious!! Great recipe..

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  45. Hi Aparna! I love that you have such wonderful memories of these special pizzas from your Amma! That she made them for you and your girl friends with such love is very wonderful indeed. I also never thought to make pizza with Indian ingredients but do love having Indian food piled on top of Naan or Chapati bread so it is a perfect combination. Thanks so much for sharing this with us on the hearth and soul hop! Please make sure in the future to link back to a current hop host in your post as Girlichef is no longer participating as a host! Thanks again! All the best, Alex

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