SPEED CAN BE A GOOD THING...

Pizza bites... Quick, easy and tasty!

So earlier in the week I shared on my Instagram page @beas_bites just how busy my life has become now that I've started my new job. It feels like I'm moving at a 1000 miles per hour and only getting so far. That being the case, it's had a HUGE impact on my food. Not negatively but... I have had to change what I eat and be more prepped than usual. I'm now all about those easy wins to a quick dinner that won't resort to me eating crap!

Is anyone else guilty of turning to pasta when you're trying to make a quick meal? I know I am. I get it though... yes pasta is quick BUT it is also a great vehicle for flavour, no matter your tastes you can usually cobble something together that's both quick and easy. 

Trying to make a conscious decision to have a varied list of quick meals got me thinking this weekend. Luckily I had a good few hours this weekend to experiment in the kitchen. I managed to talk my way into dinner at my brother's house Friday night so we had to skip our food ritual...GASP I know right!

Anyway, skipping the pizza left me with a hankering for something pizza-esque and that led me to these. I call them pizza bites! Packed full of flavour and served with a lovely tomato sauce, what more could you want? Even better, you can freeze them before baking so all you have to do is thaw them overnight in the fridge or for 2-3 hours at room temperature before baking. It may stop you eating the whole batch like I did... Ooops!
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INGREDIENTS - makes 9

FOR THE PIZZA BITES
150g strong white flour
100ml warm water
1 sachet of fast action yeast
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp sugar
1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 chilli
1/2 red onion
2 cloves of garlic

90g pancetta lardons

FOR THE SAUCE
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 red onion
1/2 chilli
Handful of fresh basil
250g passata
250ml water
1 tbsp oregano
Salt and pepper to season

METHOD
1. Pre-heat your oven to 200oc and fill your sink with hot water
2. In a bowl, mix together the flour, yeast, sugar and olive oil then make a well in the centre
3. Put the salt in the well in your bowl then add a third of the water using your hands to bring in the flour from the edge of the bowl
4. Add the remainder of the water a bit at a time until you have managed to create a ball of dough that isn't soggy
5. Turn the dough out onto your surface and knead for 8-10 minutes
6. Return the dough back to the bowl and cover with cling film. Put the cling filmed bowl into your sink
7. Finely chop the onion, chilli, basil and garlic then add to a frying pan with the oil
8. Add the pancetta to the frying pan then saute the mixture until the onions turn translucent
9. Take the mixture off the heat and set on a plate to cool. In the same pan, fry off the onion, chilli and basil for 3 minutes then add the passata, water and oregano before reducing the heat and allowing to simmer
10. Once the pancetta mixture has cooled, add to the dough and combine thoroughly
11. Split the dough into three equal parts then split each into three again
12. Roll each of the portions of dough into balls and lay onto a baking tray and leave to prove again for a further 20 minutes

***At this stage you can freeze them for use later***

13. Bake your pizza bites for 12 minutes until lightly golden then remove from the oven

Enjoy : ) x

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