Remember when Pizza Hut came out with that pizza that had burgers in the crust? Like tiny cheese covered burgers at the end of a pizza slice for a crust? I’ve stuck a link to the Pizza Hut website here for you to see it. And some people totally lost their shit about it. “It’s DISGUSTING” some of them ranted on twitter. It was classed as an abomination. “What is the world coming to when we feel the compulsion to put burgers ON a pizza?!?”
I ate one. And I fucking enjoyed it.
Which leads me to Pizza Cake. Some people dismissed it with a twitching flap of the hand like they are wafting away a bad scent. These are the same people who lament about refusing to go to McDonalds or any fast food outlet. I couldn’t dismiss Pizza Cake. I had eaten cheese burger pizza. I knew I was potentially setting myself up for heart break and heart burn. But I made one anyway.
Let’s go through the chain of how this came about first. I saw this post on BuzzFeed about a Pizza Cake. The idea was from a Canadian pizza chain, someone on reddit tried it. I immediately wanted one. It linked to the Pillsbury recipe using their pre-made dough. I can’t get hold of that.
I did some more research and found this totally brilliant from scratch recipe at this website. Using it as inspiration, pizza cake was born.
(I scaled up the standard pizza dough recipe that we use in the cottage)
700gr strong white bread flour
2tsp fast action dried yeast
Large pinch of table salt
1tsp caster sugar
1tsp garlic powder (optional)
60ml olive oil (or melted and cooled butter)
Around 500ml warm water
1tsp dried basil
2 minced garlic cloves
Pinch of salt
2 balls of mozzarella (totalling 300gr)
100gr sliced pepperoni
Fresh basil (optional)
You will also need:
A six and half inch deep, straight sided cake tin. I used a silicone one for easy unmoulding. You might want to line a metal one with greaseproof paper. A springform pan would be awesome for this.
1, First make the pizza dough. Add all the ingredients, except the warm water and olive oil into a large mixing bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer. Mix well with a whisk to combine everything.
2, Next, make a small well in the middle and pour in the olive oil and half of the water. Stir together. Keep adding water until your dough starts to come together into a ball. Turn it out onto a floured board and knead for at least ten minutes or until it is smooth and elastic. It shouldn’t be sticky to the touch, more silky. Add more flour as you work it to reach this if it is sticking to your hands and board. If you’re making this in a stand mixer, stick on the dough hook and leave it to do it’s magic and add more flour as above if necessary.
3, Dump back into a clean oiled bowl and cover with cling film. This needs to rise for at least an hour until it has doubled in size. (This is a lot of dough, give it a big bowl to rise in).
4, While the dough is rising, you can prep everything else you need for the pizza cake. Make the sauce by stirring all the ingredients together in a small bowl, cover with cling film and pop in the fridge. Cut the mozzarella into slices, or tear them up. Cover this too. You’ll need to bring the sauce, cheese and pepperoni out of the fridge before assembly. Super cold cheese and sauce mean it will struggle to cook all the way through.
5, When your dough has fully risen, preheat your oven to 200o/c. Tip the dough out onto a floured work surface and then knock it back. This means your going to hit some of the air out of it with your fist. Give it a couple of quick kneads and shape it into a round ball. Cut this into four equal quarters. Then cut three of the quarters in half. You should have six small portions and then one large portion. See below photo.
6, We’re going to shape the six small pieces into mini pizza bases. The big piece of dough will be the walls of your pizza cake. You might want to wrap this up in cling film while we work.
7, Roll out each of the balls into bases that are the same size as the base of your cake pan. Place them on a lined baking sheet (I managed to get two on each sheet) and bake for ten minutes. Remove them from the oven, and flatten them a little with a clean tea towel if they have puffed up.
8, When all six bases are cooked, we can begin assembly on the cake. Take your large piece of dough and roll this out into a long oblong. This needs to fit around the edges of your cake pan with a little overhang on the top. It doesn’t need to cover the bottom, just around the edges. Put the dough in and pinch the seam together.
9, Place one of your pizza bases straight into the bottom essentially covering the base of the cake pan. You might need to trim the bases so they fit snugly, you don’t want to smoosh the raw pizza dough down the sides as you wrestle in your pre-cooked bases.
10, Top this pizza base like you would a normal pizza.Thin layer of sauce (we don’t want it getting soggy), cheese, meat. A little fresh basil if you like. Put another pizza base on top and repeat. Do this for all six bases so you are left with what looks like a normal pizza on top.
11, Trim any overhanging dough that you might have off the sides, leaving you with a little to tuck over.
12, Put the full assembled cake on a line baking tray and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the outside dough is golden brown and it is bubbling on top.
13, Turn out your cake onto a plate, give it a couple of minutes before slicing like you would a normal cake.