I had Indian pizza for the first time in Mumbai while doing my masters. I am not going to tell you the year I graduated :). My hostel mess would be closed Sunday evenings. Me and a good friend of mine would sometimes order Indian pizza and enjoy it sitting on the terrace of our hostel. Those were fun days, we would enjoy the pizza over endless conversations about anything under the sun or rather the moon. Then fast forward many years, I had Indian pizza in Bay Area, California from a place called Tasty Subs & Pizza. They had interesting names for pizzas based on Bollywood movies. That was the inspiration I needed to make Indian pizza after moving back to the mid west. I replace the pizza sauce with Indian curry gravy and top it with some marinated vegetables and paneer.
I made these as mini pizzas recently for a New Year's eve party. I baked them in the afternoon and warmed them up before the party. If I were making these to be eaten right away, I would bake them and broil them for the last 3 minutes to give a nice char to the paneer.
I used a makhani style gravy.
Please click on the link above for the recipe.
I made mini pizzas, so I cut half a slab of store bought paneer and cut it into small pieces. I diced green peppers and onions also. I made a green marinade using yoghurt, sour cream, cilantro, ginger, green chillies and chaat masala powder and salt. I covered the paneer and vegetables in the marinade in two separate bowls and let it sit in the fridge for a couple of hours. Even half an hour is good.
I made a puree of 1/2 cup of cilantro, 2 green chillies and 1/2 tbsp. of ginger with a spoon of yoghurt. Then I mixed this with half a cup of yoghurt and 1/2 cup sour cream. I had homemade yoghurt made with 2% milk, so I mixed sour cream. If I had full fat yoghurt and lots of time, I would have hung it for a while to remove some of the liquid and used that instead.
I added 1/2 tsp of chaat masala powder and salt and mixed it well.
Since I was making mini pizzas, I cut the paneer into small pieces and marinated them separately to ensure each pizza got atleast 3 pieces of paneer.
All about that base:
I simply followed the instructions on the back of the pizza yeast packet.
Now the fun part:
I pre heated the oven to 425 F.
I divided the dough into four pieces and rolled each one pretty thin. I like thin crust pizza, you can make it however you like. I used a pizza cutter and cut it free style into small pieces. Then I placed them on a parchment paper lined baking sheet . I poked them several times with a fork to prevent puffing.
I spread the sauce, topped it with 3 -4 pieces of paneer without getting excess of the marinade, I squeezed the veggies gently to get rid of the excess liquid and topped it with the veggies and some fresh chopped cilantro.
Sprinkled a little shaved parmesan.
Bake on bottom rack of oven for 12 minutes. Keep an eye on it after 10 minutes and bake a few extra minutes if necessary, the ends of the crust should look toasted and golden.
If you are serving them later, pre heat at 350 F for 5 to 7 minutes.