Classic Capriciosa

Home-made Pizza

The best pizza in all the world.

The first gift my partner ever gave me, soon after we became 'an item', was a tin of Greek olives. He had returned from Greece and a cycling holiday while I had stayed 'home'. I have to use inverted commas there, because 'home' at the time was in southern Africa. The experiences of those years are a story for another time. Let's just say that the gift was welcomed because luxuries like olives were few and far between.

I love olives and always have. I could have sat on my front porch and eaten the whole lot in one go (and I was tempted) but I'm also a sharing kind of girl. So I made pizza.

Ingredients for a classic capriciosa pizza

My first pizza was a far cry from those that I make these days. I was just learning to cook. My sister had given me Babette Hayes' Australian Cookbook (this was 1982) for my birthday not long before I had left Australia and in it I found her recipe for Neapolitan Pizza. That was the only recipe in thebook with olives. I had no yeast to make the dough - and I would have been too scared to in those days anyway - so I used the shortcrust pastry recipe from the previous page.

So I had olives, mushrooms, capsicum and cheese back then and the pizza was great.

Home made pizza ready for the oven

Today's version of my pizza with olives has a few more ingredients and a somewhat more sophisticated approach. I try to use as much garlic as I can through winter in the hope of warding off colds and flu. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. But it makes for a good pizza so long as you put it far down the ingredients enough that it cooks but does not burn. I like it on top of the sauce and under the cheese.

You can see the rest of the ingredients in the photos - salami, capsicum, and anchovies. Yes, this one was salty. The trick is to not load up the ingredients. Use a little of each and you get the flavour without the need to visit the doctor or pharmacist.

Homemade Capriciosa ready to eat.

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