Saturday, 12 May 2012

From bread-making to pizza dough and Moroccan lamb

When I first moved to Hong Kong 11 years ago, I considered owning a bread machine to be essential as I found it very difficult to locate good 'western style' wholesome bread. Unfortunately, I have never been a fan of the white, sweet breads available at Chinese bakeries. I have always favoured the more rustic, wholegrain breads from both a personal and of course nutritional point of view! These days the situation has improved, although, we still make our own fresh, preservative-free bread. When in Australia I love Irrewarra sour dough and other rustic breads, but, I have found nothing surpasses our homemade bread in HK. 

Using a bread machine is too easy for loaf making, so the Thermomix will probably never take over this job for me. However, thanks to the Thermomix, I often grind my own flour from whole grains such as quinoa, oats etc. and seeds to supplement my spelt bread flour as a nutrient boost for our homemade bread. I also have lots of fun making gourmet breads such as yeast-based savoury and sweet scrolls and I do have plans to venture into making flat, turkish and flavoured twist breads. I have some recipes on hand and others I'd like to develop, so I'm definitely no expert and would love to hear from anyone who has really delved into this area. Please leave a comment on my Mixing it up in HK Facebook page or directly on this blog :)

Moving from breads to pizzas . . . my family are also a big fan of homemade pizza using a homemade pizza base of course, but I still like to make my pizza base in the bread machine. I make my dough from half white and half wholemeal spelt flour and usually add 1/2 cup of seeds such as flax. If you don't own a bread machine, you could use the Everyday Cooking Book recipe or try Quirky Cooking's gluten-free or spelt pizza dough.

Here is a recent pizza topping family favourite of ours . . . Moroccan lamb pizza. You could easily use Moroccan seasoning for this recipe but I like to blend my own seasoning using freshly ground spices where possible. Also, Moroccan seasoning is difficult to come by in Hong Kong. 

Moroccan Lamb Pizza


1 x lamb backstrap (360g) or leg lamb, diced
1 large garlic clove
1 red onion, halved
20g EVOO
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp cinnamon
pinch cayenne pepper
a few grinds of sea salt & black pepper
1 1/2 tbsp tomato paste
8 sml vine ripened tomatoes (or use cherry tomatoes), sliced
175g butternut pumpkin, peeled, deseeded, thinly sliced (optional)
150g feta cheese, crumbled
2 tbsp pinenuts
2 tbsp chopped fresh mint leaves


  1. Preheat oven to 220°C and prepare two pizza pans with olive oil and a sprinkling of flour.
  2. Mince lamb strap in TM bowl by pulsing the Turbo button a few times. Put the mince aside.
  3. Add the red onion and garlic to the TM bowl and chop 5 seconds on speed 7.
  4. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add spices and oil and sauté for 2 minutes at 100°C on speed 1.
  5. Add the mince and cook for 10-15 minutes at 100°C on speed 1 or until any liquid has evaporated. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove the mince from the bowl and set aside.
  6. Rinse out the TM bowl and fill with 500g water. Use the Varoma to steam your pumpkin. I didn't have any in the fridge when I last made this pizza (see photo), but it is a lovely addition to the pizza. 
  7. While the pumpkin is steaming, spoon the tomato paste over the pizza bases. Divide the lamb mixture, sliced tomato, pumpkin, fetta and pine nuts between the two rounds. Place on preheated trays and bake for 12-15 minutes or until the pizza base is browned. 
  8. Scatter with freshly chopped mint and serve immediately.

no thermomix?
Use a stovetop to prepare your Moroccan lamb in a saucepan and steam your pumpkin. You can mince your own lamb using a food processor or mincer (or buy lamb mince). 

  • Add extra cayenne pepper for more kick and use rounded teaspoon measures for a more intense Moroccan flavour. This recipe is child-friendly :-)
  • Use natural yoghurt blended with freshly chopped mint in place of the feta or you could make this pizza dairy-free by omitting both! 
  • add fresh baby spinach leaves
  • Use chopped baby beetroot (drained from can) instead of pumpkin. Scatter over pizza with mint after cooking. 

 Find me on Facebook at Mixing it up in HK

No comments:

Post a Comment