Pizza "in Teglia" | Authentic Italian Pan Pizza Recipe
Updated: Jul 8
If you ask Italians what their favorite dish is, the majority will probably say pizza! For Italians, pizza is more important than most outsiders can imagine: it is an integral part of our culture, it is our pride, it is happiness itself.
Pizza, as we know it today, appeared in Naples in the 19th century and quickly conquered the world! Eating a Margherita in the place where it was born is one of the best culinary adventures you can experience. Unfortunately, it is difficult to replicate at home without a wood fire oven. Because of this, Italians often make this simple pan pizza at home when we can’t get the real thing! It’s a far cry from Neapolitan pizza, but it’s still delicious.
The pizza itself takes about 30 minutes to cook, but the dough should be made well in advance—preferably the day before—so it has time to rise. Patience pays off when it comes to pizza dough!
Pizza dough is much easier to make in large batches, so this recipe provides instructions on how to make enough for 3-4 pan pizzas. After the dough has completed rising, you can freeze it to save for later!
For the dough, you will need:
1kg bread flour
700ml room temperature water
1 packet (7 grams) active dry yeast
Semolina flour for dusting
Olive oil to oil the bowls and pans
For topping, you will need
Canned whole peeled tomatoes to serve
Cubed mozzarella cheese to taste
In a large bowl, mix flour and yeast. Gradually add water while mixing with a wooden spoon. When all the water is in add the salt, and mix all together. The dough should be as hydrated as possible while still being manageable by hand. Feel free to adjust the amount of water as needed and don't worry if it's quite sticky!
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Dust a large work surface with semolina flour and transfer the dough from the bowl. Work the dough by folding and pressing it into itself. Only about 4-8 folds are necessary to properly aerate it.
Brush the mixing bowl with oil and place the dough back into it. For a traditional touch, you can use a knife to make a shallow cross-shaped slash on top. Italians sometimes do this to bless the dough! Cover and place in the fridge to rest overnight.
Remove dough from the fridge about 4-6 hours before you intend to cook it. Repeat the process of folding from above (don't forget the flour!), place back into the bowl and allow to rise, covered, for at least 3 hours in warmer climates, up to 5 in colder. When in doubt, let it rise a little longer.
Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees F.
Lightly oil one (or more!) 18x13-inch non-stick baking pans. Each pan requires a ball of dough roughly the size of a grapefruit. Separate the dough into such chunks and either prepare each one in a pan, or place into a plastic bag and freeze for later use.
Use your hands to gently spread each dough ball so it fills the sheet. Take care to maintain a uniform thickness throughout. The dough will tend to shrink back to size, particularly from the corners of the pan, but if you continue spreading gently it will eventually keep its shape. If the dough is particularly stubborn, you can let it rest for a few minutes before spreading it out again.
To make the sauce, add whole peeled tomatoes to serve (roughly 12oz, or 350g, per pizza) into a bowl with a pinch of salt and a drizzle of olive oil. Crush the tomatoes with a fork and mix together. Ladle the sauce onto the dough and spread evenly, leaving a small margin of crust, of course!
Cook for 20 minutes, then remove from oven. Check the bottom of the pizza, it should be nearing a golden color. Spread cubed mozzarella to taste over the pizza, along with a few leaves of fresh basil. Drizzle some extra olive oil on top. Cook for another 5 minutes or so, until the cheese melts.
Watch the Pasta Grammar video in which we make this recipe: