My quest for making good quality pizza started the minute I watched Bobby Flay toss that pie on his barbecue grill one sleepy winter day. It was an old episode of Boy Meets Grill and Bobby was grilling away with the finesse only a well-seasoned chef is acquainted with. This time, instead of watching the pizza (topped with everything meat, signature Flay) sizzle, I realized that I must try baking a pie. Its been ten months since I watched the episode and I am proud to say that I am five Pizza Pies old.
Anyway, Monday was a cold day, huge surprise! My pizza base dough (courtesy Giada De Laurentiis) had been basking in the refrigerator for two days. Hence, it was only natural for me to bring it out and bake that pie. I had some home-made Paneer (cottage cheese) in the pantry which I marinated, in homage to the Paneer Tikka pizza we used to order back home from Pizzaurant, Chennai: the best Pizza place in the city.
So I started by marinating the Paneer in curd, a pinch of salt, a tablespoon Garam Masala, a teaspoon Chili Powder (cayenne pepper will work) and a teaspoon turmeric powder for two hours. Next, I chopped one small onion, half a bell pepper, half a Jalapeño and grated two large bulbs of garlic.
I then rolled out the base on a well-oiled and flour dusted pizza pan. After this, I added some mozzarella cheese to the pan, arranged the marinated Paneer, onion, bell pepper and garlic. I topped this with some more cheese (it may seem like I used a lot of cheese but in reality, it took less than half a cup to make this pizza delicious) and finished by sprinkling some salt, red pepper flakes, oregano and a drizzle of olive oil. The pie went into a 450 F (230 C) pre-heated oven for 15 minutes and came out bubbly, crispy and completely beautiful.