Although pizza was born in Naples, it is of course now eaten all over Italy – and the world. I am so used to topping it with the usual tomato, mozzarella, basil, anchovies and olives, but this more robust alternative is a most pleasant surprise. Although Gruyère is not an Italian cheese, it goes really well with this ‘pizza of the mountains’, and is readily available to buy. Be warned, this is a very filling pizza, but it’s also very delicious!
- 500 g strong plain flour, plus extra for dusting
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 x 7 g sachet of dried yeast
- 320 ml lukewarm water
- a few dried breadcrumbs or a bit of semolina, for dusting
- 80 g Gruyère cheese, grated
- 250 g crème fraîche
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
- 140 g salami, cut into strips
- a few marjoram leaves
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Resting time 30 minutes
Preheat the oven to 240°C/Gas 9.
Combine the flour, salt and yeast in a large bowl. Gradually add the water, mixing well with your hands to obtain a dough. If you find the dough too sticky, simply add a little more flour. Shape into a ball, cover with a cloth and leave to rest for 5 minutes.
Knead the dough for about 10 minutes and split it in half. Sprinkle some flour on a clean kitchen cloth and place the pieces of dough on it. Cover with a slightly damp cloth and leave to rise for at least 30 minutes in a warm place.
Meanwhile combine the Gruyère and crème fraîche in a bowl, adding some salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
Sprinkle some flour on a clean work surface and spread the dough into a circle about 30 cm in diameter, making it as thin as possible (without tearing it), with the border slightly thicker. Repeat with the other dough ball.
Sprinkle two flat baking trays with breadcrumbs or semolina and place the pizza bases on them. Spread the crème fraîche mixture over each base. Top with the onions and salami. Bake in the hot oven for 10 minutes.
Remove, sprinkle with the marjoram and serve.