Halloween mummified pizzas

stripImageHorribly easy and terrifyingly tasty mummy pizzas to make with your little pumpkins in the run up to All Hallow’s Eve or to give as treats for spooks and wizards who come knocking on the door. Dead simple, no tricks!

I love Halloween… I’m deeply disappointed that it’s a combination of complete apathy and some tatty cheap costumes for the most part. It doesn’t all have to be plastic bats, giant spiders and motion sensor-activated ghost noises (especially if you don’t have little children in the house). I tend to sculpt and paint a few pumpkins for the front door and inside I’ll arrange smaller decorative squashes, conkers, hops and other foraged greenery and light a number of candles and lanterns. For All Hallow’s Eve I usually bake (any ol’ excuse) and give out jelly wormy cupcakes or the like to squeals of delight/horror when trick or treaters knock. I do like the dressing up bit (read in to that as little or as much as you will!) and have made a number of costumes for my lads, my husband and myself. One year my husband looked like Sweeney Todd a bit too realistically and several parents were a bit perturbed…

As a change from dishing out yet more sugary treats to children, these mini pizzas make a great alternative. And, if you pass them out still warm they’ll have both fuel and a toasty belly on what’s a usually pretty cold evening as they traipse door-to-door. Of course, you could black out all the rooms, pretend you’re not in when they knock and scoff these yourself with a spooky film and a nice glass of Chianti. Now that’s a neat trick.

Notes

  • Makes 12 small pizzas
  • To make vegetarian, swap out the salami for mushrooms or thinly sliced peppers
  • if you don’t have chilli flavoured olive oil, just use your normal olive oil and sprinkle a few dried chilli flakes in

Equipment

  • Two large baking trays
  • Baking paper or parchment
  • Long knife, pizza wheel or mezzaluna
  • Wide straw
  • Large bowl
  • Clean linen tea towel or cling film
  • Rolling pin
  • Small bowl
  • Spoon
  • Scissors

Ingredients – base

  • Strong white bread flour – 500g (plus extra for dusting)
  • A rich or virgin olive oil, I’ve used the Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil from Filippo Berio – 1ยผ tablespoons (plus a little extra for the bowl)
  • Fine salt – 1ยผ teaspoons
  • Granulated sugar – 1 teaspoon
  • Lukewarm water – 350ml
  • Dried, fast acting yeast – 1ยผ teaspoons

Ingredients – toppings

  • Sun dried tomato pesto – 70g
  • Concentrated tomato puree – 70g
  • Chilli flavoured olive oil – 1 tablespoon
  • Mozzarella – two 125g balls (you’ll need about 1 ยฝ balls for the pizza topping and a little extra to cut out the eyes)
  • Salame/pepperoni – 120g of sliced meats of your choice or a veggie alternative like mushrooms or peppers
  • A few black onion seeds, Nigella seeds or cracked black peppercorns for the pupils

Method

  1. Mix all the ingredients for the bread (flour, oil, salt, sugar, water and yeast) together in a bowl, using your fingers
  2. Tip out on to a clean surface and knead for ten minutes, you may need to add a little flour to the work surface if it continues to stick (but try kneading for a few minutes without adding the flour if you can)*
    * you can use a stand mixer or food processor if you prefer, rather than hand kneading
  3. When the dough becomes smooth and slightly glossy on the surface, it’s been kneaded enough and is ready for proving
  4. Rub a little olive oil round the bowl and place the kneaded dough in
  5. Cover with the linen tea towel or cling film and leave to rise in a warm (but not too hot) place for around an hour until it has risen well and a few large bubbles have appeared under the surface
  6. Lightly dust your work surface and tip out the dough
  7. Punch down the dough to knock the air out of it
  8. Using the rolling pin and/or your hands, flatten out the dough as thinly and evenly as possible into a large rectangle. You should be able to get it to the size of a typical large baking sheet (40 x 27cm / 15″ x 10″)
  9. Cut off a third off the end of the rectangle – you will need this for the mummy ‘wrappings’
  10. Gently transfer the large portion of the flattened dough onto a piece of baking paper (this makes each mini pizza easier to pick up and move)
  11. Cut this dough into twelve equal pieces, by first cutting along the middle lengthways, then making five equally spaced cuts. You should have twelve mini rectangles, about 20cm x 5cm (plus the ‘spare’ piece of dough you cut off)
  12. Using scissors, cut the baking paper around the twelve pizzas, so they each have their own portion that they are sitting on
  13. Cut the spare piece of dough into long strips of about 1cm widthdoughStrips
  14. Put your oven on to 210ยบC fan / 230ยบC conventional
  15. Mix the pesto, puree and chilli flavoured olive oil in a small bowl to make a pizza sauce, then spoon it out equally between the twelve mini pizzas, using the back of the spoon to spread it outpesto-puree
  16. Cut two thin slices off the mozzarella and keep to one side for the mummies’ eyes
  17. Rip up the rest of the mozzarella evenly between the twelve pizzasmozzarella
  18. Now lay the pepperoni, salame or veggies (whichever you’re using) on top of the mozzarella
  19. Taking one of the dough strips, you can now start to make the mummy ‘wrappings’
  20. Lay a dough strip diagonally across the pizza and cut to size. Repeat in a random crisscrossing pattern until you’ve ‘wrapped’ each mummy pizzawrappedDough
  21. You do need to squash the ends of every strips just slightly into the pizza base, otherwise when they bake they will lift up. Pinching the end of a strip to the base fixes them together
  22. Place six pizzas spread out on each of the two baking trays, so they have some space to rise and spread out
  23. Bake for 14 – 16 minutes until the bottom of the pizza is baked, the top of the wrappings are a nice golden brown and the mozzarella is gooey and a bit crispy round the edges
  24. While the pizzas are cooling a little, you can make the eyes. Using a wide straw punch out circles from the remaining mozzarella slices and arrange in pairs (or even some threes!) on the pizzas, so it looks like the mummies are peering out from their wrappings
  25. Add a Nigella or black onion seed (or a little piece of black peppercorn) to each eye so it looks like a pupilindividual
  26. Best served still warm, but can be eaten cold

finished1

5 Comments

I'd love you to leave a reply :)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.