Chick Pea, Mushroom and Leek Pizza

The dough base for this vegetarian pizza is made with easy-blend yeast which is mixed directly into the flour, needs only one rising and so is useful if you haven’t much time. Bake the pizza on your largest baking sheet or shallow ovenproof dish. A rectangular-shaped pizza made in a shallow ovenproof dish is easier to cut and share out than a round one. The chick pea and mint topping has a Middle Eastern flavour to it and has the advantage of tasting good when eaten cold, which is not the case with most pizzas.

Ingredients

For The Dough

  • 375 g (12 oz) strong plain flour
  • 3 teaspoons crushed sea salt
  • 1 sachet easy-blend dried yeast
  • 250 ml (8 fl oz) lukewarm water
  • About 2 tablespoons olive oil

For The Topping

  • 432 g (14 oz) can chickpeas, drained
  • 1 large handful fresh mint leaves, chopped finely
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped finely
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 125 g (4 oz) chestnut mushrooms, sliced thinly
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons tomato purée
  • About 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 thin leeks, trimmed and sliced very thinly
  • 50 g (2 oz) Feta cheese
  • Salt and black pepper

Method

Grease a very large baking sheet or shallow ovenproof dish. Put the flour into a bowl and add the sea salt and yeast. Stir in the water and olive oil with a wooden spoon, then gather the dough together and knead on a floured work surface with the palms of your hands for 5-10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic. Using a heavy rolling pin roll out the dough firmly and thinly into a piece the same size as the baking sheet or dish. Lay in the dough and put the baking sheet or dish inside a puffed-up large polythene bag or bin liner in a warmish place for 45–60 minutes until the dough has risen moderately.

Meanwhile, prepare the topping. Using a fork roughly crush the drained chick peas in a bowl, then add the chopped mint leaves, chopped garlic, chopped tomatoes, sliced mushrooms, cumin seeds, tomato purée and olive oil. Season with salt and black pepper. Mix together with a large spoon.

When the dough is ready brush it all over with olive oil. Spread the chick pea mixture evenly over the dough, leaving a 1.5cm (¾in) border around the edges, then sprinkle the sliced leeks over the chick pea mixture and crumble the Feta cheese on top. Cook at the top of a preheated oven, 230°C, 450°F, Gas Mark 8 for about 15 minutes until the edges of the dough are browned.

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