Recipe: Soda Bread Pizza

A wee Irish Twist on the Italian classic.

This recipe serves 4 to 6, depending on how hungry you are

For the soda bread pizza base:
450g plain white flour
1 level teaspoon salt
1 level teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
400ml buttermilk

For the tomato sauce:
2 tins of peeled plum tomatoes
60g butter
1 onion, peeled and cut in half
Salt

For the toppings:
Grated cheddar cheese
Mozzarella cheese, torn into pieces
Bacon, sliced into ribbons
Pepperoni
Black Olives
Tomato slices
Courgette slices
Kale
Red onions, chopped into wedges

These are just some suggestions you can choose whatever toppings you like, one of my favourites is skipping the tomato sauce and topping with cooked new potatoes, blue cheese, red onion and thyme leaves.

How to make the Soda Bread Pizzas:
1.First make the tomato sauce. Put the tins of tomatoes, butter, onion cut in half and a couple of pinches of salt in a saucepan. Turn the heat on to medium and bring to a simmer (when bubbles slowly start to form on the top of the sauce).

2.Cook the sauce uncovered for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally until it is quite thick.

3. Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius (200 degrees fan), ready to cook the pizzas.

4. Measure the flour, salt and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl and mix with a whisk to ensure it is evenly mixed.

5. Make a well (a hole) in the centre of the flour mixture and add about 300ml of the buttermilk. Make your hand into claw shape and gently mix the flour and buttermilk together. Add a bit more buttermilk until you have a dough that is soft, but not too sticky.

6. Sprinkle some flour onto a piece of greaseproof paper on the kitchen counter. Put the dough onto the paper and shape it into a round flat pizza shape, about 3cm thick. Gently lift the greaseproof paper, with the dough on it, onto a baking sheet.

7. Put on a thin layer of the tomato sauce and then add the toppings of your choice.

8. Put the pizza in the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Turn the oven temperature down to 200 degrees Celsius and bake for another 20 minutes or until fully cooked.

9. Alternatively, to make one big ‘pizza’ line a rectangular baking tray with greaseproof paper and spread out the dough until it is about 3cm thick. Put on your chosen toppings and put in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes. Turn the oven temperature down to 200 degrees Celsius and bake for another 30-35 minutes or until fully cooked.

Copyright Erin Bunting, June 2017. Soda base recipe is taken from Darina Allen’s Ballymaloe Cookery School Soda Bread Loaf recipe.

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