These squashy, ovalish flattish pizza-like things are just perfect for sharing with your friends while you watch Germany play in the World Cup. They are simple to make and if you prepare the dough now you can put it in the fridge until tomorrow when you are ready to use it.
The dough is typically made out of just about any flour – probably a mixture of whole or white wheat or spelt with maybe some rye thrown in for good measure. They are rolled roughly and topped with various simple things like qwark (a kind of soft cheese – you can substitute feta that you beat with cream cheese to make something a bit crumbly and yet spreadable), speck (a kind of smoked bacon), roughly chopped onions and dried herbs before being popped into a bread oven for a quick little bake. Presented on a plate with no cutlery at all, these are simply crammed into the mouth as soon as possible because they just smell so incredible good out in all that mountain air.
Alpine pizzas are made with what you have in your mountain hut all year round so, no, they never have fresh herbs or vegetables (other than onions which keep through the winter) – not even tomatoes!
300 g flour (strong white wheat flour, whole wheat flour or a mixture)
180 g water
1.5 g instant yeast/3 g dry yeast/6 g fresh yeast
3 g salt
Note: if you are making the dough a day in advance cut the yeast in half
Toppings (all are options):
qwark (if you cannot get this, mush up some cream cheese and feta into a spreadable paste)
thinly sliced onion or shallots
dried mixed herbs
…anything you would put on a pizza that you can get in the mountains all year round
1. Make it a couple of hours before you want to eat
Measure the flour into a big bowl.
If using instant or fresh yeast sprinkle it in and add all of the other dough ingredients. If you are using dry yeast, make a well in the flour, add 100 g of the water and wait for 10-15 minutes until a beige sludge forms on the top. Then add all of the other dough ingredients.
Mix the ingredients together and then turn the dough out onto the table. Knead well for ten minutes and then return the dough to the bowl. Cover and let rest for 1 -2 hours until it has doubled in size.
2. Make it a day in advance
Measure the flour into a big bowl.
If using instant or fresh yeast sprinkle it in and add all of the other dough ingredients. If you are using dry yeast, make a well in the flour, add 100 g of the water and wait for 10-15 minutes until a beige sludge forms on the top. Then add the rest of the water and all of the other dough ingredients.
Mix the dough by hand in the bowl to disperse the yeast and salt evenly and get a smooth-ish dough. Don’t bother kneading. Cover the bowl with clingfilm and pop it in the fridge until you are ready to use it.
Preheat the oven as high as you can get it and put in a baking tray to heat it up.
Pull the dough out of the bowl and put it onto a floured surface.
Shaping the alpine pizzas:
Divide the dough into six pieces.
Roll each piece into a rough oval shape with a rolling pin until it is about 1/2 cm thick. Prick each one with a fork several times so it does not puff up in the oven. Top each one with the topping of your choice, first spreading the qwark to stick it all down.
Take out the VERY HOT baking tray and sprinkle coarsely ground polenta or semolina on top of it. Carefully transfer the pizzas to the tray and pop them back in the oven for 10 minutes or so until they are clearly cooked (tops bubbling, dough browned). This depends on how hot you can get your oven.
Consume with plenty of German beer as you cheer on the side of your choice.
Try not to burn yourself by eating them too quickly.
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