Founding spur: has been one of the greatest honours of my life. Each and every spurian, and all of the people we've worked with have helped shape who I am.
From as early as I can remember in my childhood - every Saturday was pizza night. Dad would put on the dough in the afternoon and let it rise amidst the chaos of a family of eight. At about six o'clock, he'd bang on the oven and start pumping out pizzas - each vanishing into the living room to be devoured by us kids in front of trashy 90's action TV. It was probably the most sacred and constant ritual of my childhood. Pizza has become something of a cornerstone of my family - each of my brothers and I helped lay bricks for the oven on dad's retirement property, and we regularly update each other on the weekend's pizza progress. For me - it's now a Sunday tradition for my partner and I, and a regular invitation for friends. Most of all, I can't wait to have my own kids and introduce them to their first bite of 'za.
· 500g Baker's Flour - I use '00'250ml
· Room temperature water
· 50ml boiled water
· Approx 15g dried yeast
· Dash of honey
· 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
· Extra flour to dust
· 400g crushed/finely diced tomatoes
· 2-3 tablespoons tomato paste
· 1 clove crushed garlic
· 1 teaspoon sugar
Making the dough:
1 · Combine your room temp water and boiled water, then whisk in the dried yeast.
2 · Add the flour to a large mixing bowl, then make a small well in the middle.
3 · Add the olive oil and yeasty water, then mix everything together in a soft wet dough. (You may want to use your hands for this but make sure to wet them first. I use a wooden spoon for this part.)
4 · Dust a section of countertop with extra flour for your dough.
5 · Working on the dusted countertop, knead the dough until it becomes smooth and stretchy. (This can take anywhere up to about ten minutes - you'll know when its ready when the dough becomes smooth skinned and sort of springy.)
6 · Gather the dough back into a ball, drizzle a bit of olive oil in your bowl, and place the dough ball back in.
7 · Dust with a bit of flour, then cover the bowl with a damp cloth.
8 · Place this somewhere relatively warm to rise.
9 · Turn on the oven to 260 degrees celsius. If you have a pizza stone, chuck it in to heat up. If not, you can use an upside-down oven tray.
10 · When the dough has at least doubled in size - it's ready.
Making the sauce (while the dough is rising):
1 · Put a saucepan on medium heat and add all the sauce ingredients.
2 · Stir well to combine.
3 · Bring this to a simmer and let it reduce by about a third or so.
Making the pizza:
1 · If your dough is ready, re-dust the countertop work space.
2 · Grab a small handful of dough (golfball to mandarin sized, your mileage will vary) and roll this out with a rolling pin (wine bottles also work well, and can be a delicious addition to the whole process) to about ~20cm width.
3 · Carefully place your rolled out dough on your pizza stone/tray.
4 · Top with a spoonful of sauce and spread this out over the dough with the back of the spoon.
5 · Add a few slices of wet mozzarella slices and basil for a simple and delicious pizza - or add any variety of toppings you like.
6 · Cook at 260 for about six minutes - when the base is crispy and browned, pull out the pizza, slice, and serve.
Recipe shared byWilliam Smith-Stubbs
William is founder and director of spur:, and passionate about social change and mental health.
Recipe attributed to