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Basil Pesto And Bocconcini Pizza

Basil Pesto And Bocconcini Pizza

Here's a real Italian-flavoured pizza!


  • 1½ cups warm water
  • 2 tsp warm yeast
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • 500 grams flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 tblsp olive oil
  • 4 tblsp basil pesto
  • 300 – 400 grams bocconcini cheese (see Cook’s Tips)
  • ¼ cup pinenuts (optional)
  • flaky sea salt


  1. Have the warm water in a large 3 cup-capacity jug and sprinkle in the yeast and sugar. Stir to mix well and set aside for about 7 minutes until the yeast has dissolved and has become soft and spongy on top of the water. (This means the yeast is alive. If it does not froth it is dead - probably too old - so throw it away and buy some fresh.
  2. Put the flour and salt into a food processor and with the motor running pour in the olive oil and frothy yeast mixture down the feed tube as fast as the flour can absorb it.
  3. It should form one ball that rides around the blade in the machine and does not cling to the bowl. If the dough is sticking to the bowl sprinkle in a half teaspoon of flour at a time until it does form a soft ball. If on the other hand it is too tough and in separate pieces add a few extra dribbles of water or oil until the dough forms a soft ball that processes easily.
  4. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover with wrap and set aside for about 30 - 45 minutes until it is double in bulk. If you are in a cold kitchen this may take up to an hour.
  5. Turn the dough out onto a floured board, divide in two. Roll each round out to 23 -26cm and place on a baking tray (see Cook's Tips).
  6. Spread each round with 2 tablespoons of pesto. Finely slice the bocconcini into thin rounds and place randomly on top. Sprinkle with pinenuts if using.
  7. Bake at 250 degrees Celsius for around 12-15 minutes until the pizza is hot and golden. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt and ground black pepper just before serving if wished.

Cooks Tips

- This dough can also be prepared in a bread machine. - Bocconcini cheese is fresh mozzarella, shaped into small balls and sold in brine or vacuum packed. Alternatives include mozzarella, grated cheddar-style cheese. - If possible cook the pizza on a pre-heated pizza stone to achieve a crisp base.

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