We had a very special family time over the June long weekend. We all worked together to bake pizza in our woodfired oven flavoured with the native food spices of Lemon Myrtle, Mountain Pepper, Native Thyme and Strawberry Gum. These recipes are featured in our new Peppermint Ridge Farm book on growing and cooking with native foods in your own backyard – it will be available soon! We are taking orders for advanced copies if you’re interested.
It is really easy to use these native food plants in your everyday cooking. All of these spices are available right now from the Peppermint Ridge Native Food online store–order and start cooking!
Start by making up a spice mix that you can use on pretty much any savoury dish. The trick is to add some of the mix right at the end of the cooking by simply sprinkling it over before serving.
Lemon Myrtle Spice Mix
Process together until a fine – 15 large fresh Lemon Myrtle leaves, 10 fresh large Mountain Pepper leaves, 1 clove garlic, 1/4 tsp salt, pinch of ground black pepper.
Strawberry Gum Spice Mix
Replace the Lemon Myrtle with 1 Tbsp dried Strawberry Gum powder.
This is the recipe that never fails us here: Makes about 4 large pizzas.
- 200g medium ground Semolina flour
- 250g white “tipo 00” flour
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 1/2 tsp dried yeast
- 290 mls warm water
Mix and knead until smooth. Place in a bowl and cover with oiled clingfilm and leave to double in size (about 90 minutes).
Pull off handfuls and roll out to cover your pizza pan.
Brush with olive oil, spread over some of our Warrigal Greens pesto or any other pesto and sprinkle over some of the Lemon Myrtle spice mix. Now place your favourite toppings over the base – we used a combination of salami/ham, capsicum, mushroom, onion, pineapple and topped our selection with mozzarella cheese, or we used roasted pumpkin, onion, blue cheese and honey. Bake until the base is golden and the top crisp – around 10 minutes. Sprinkle more spice mix over the cooked pizza and enjoy!
The secret to good pizza is to have the base of the oven very hot and it cooks from underneath as well as from on top. If you don’t have a wood fired oven, a heated pizza stone in your kitchen oven will do the trick. You may need to pre-bake the pizza dough before adding the toppings when using a conventional oven to ensure the center cooks thoroughly.
For our second pizza we used the Strawberry Gum spice mix with tomato pasta sauce or tomato paste on the base, mix in about 1 tsp of the spice for a small pizza. When the pizza is cooked sprinkle a little more of the Strawberry Gum powder over before serving. Strawberry Gum has an amazing affinity with tomato and will create a wonderful taste experience.
Have fun cooking your pizzas!