Pizza or Desi Pizza is not a word. It’s a feeling for the majority of people: the creamier, the saucier, the better. And the cheese pull, surely makes it orgasmic. However, we might get tired of the regular toppings of pepperoni, bell pepper, onions, corn, bacon, sausage, olives, jalapenos, and others. An experimental taste never harms the tongue.
But at a certain point, there comes a limit of ingredients and recipes that can be combined. Well, that never happens with Indian Cuisine as here, at every 10 kilometers, you’re likely to come across some new ingredient or a unique recipe combination.
Indian pizza, or famously we can call it a Desi Pizza, is yet not much famous. But there are restaurants in Campbell and Michigan who serve the various Desi Pizza Combinations and are loved by not only young Indians but a lot of non-Indians too. But the question is how to make them? You don’t need to worry much about that as here are few ideas of desi pizza combinations that you can try, and I’m sure they are going to be savory.
An Indian Flatbread Pizza Base
Taking an Indian flatbread as a base instead of the regular pizza base will be a great step to make a desi pizza. Even flatbreads are of a great variety as per the region. You can choose the base from the following.
- Naan, i.e., a flatbread made of wheat or Maida flour, is usually made chewy and soft, but for pizza, you make the naan crispier at the edges.
- Uttapam/Dosa, which is a pancake made from a fermented batter of rice flour.
- Bhakri, which is a thick flatbread out of wheat flour.
- You could even use the flatbread made from Bajra and Maize Flour popularly known as Rotla and Makki di Roti, respectively.
The Varied Topping Options
India being a country of flavors, there are many topping options available for making a desi pizza.
- Topping a Crust desi pizza with butter chicken or barbeque paneer can add a great taste. The North Indian red curry spread over the base and then topped with spicy marinated paneer, bacon, diced flavored chicken can be a good option.
- If you wish to have a fresh green look, you can make the curry of spinach and tomatoes or a coriander/basil pesto sauce. Over the sauce, you can top the vegetables like bell pepper, spicy corn, jalapenos, black olives, or a mix of vegetables of your choice.
- If you are a fan of onion and garlic, a combination of creamy garlic sauce topped with onion and vegetables, which are Smokey sautéed, will give a great range of flavors.
- For the final dressing, it is not necessary to finish it off with cheese. If you’re using an Indian flatbread like Uthappam or Kulcha, you can use it as a base and cover both with the topping in between and make a version of sandwich desi pizza.
Know about the trends of desi pizza in foreign countries and how it is becoming the next obsession for Americans here.
Well, deciding on exactly what combination to choose, can be tough. So, here are a few recipes that you can try.
Pav Bhaji Pizza
If it turned out well, this can be the best desi pizza. And it’ll be easy and healthy to cook this.
Ingredients Required (For Topping)
- Cumin seeds
- 1 medium-sized chopped onion
- 1 large or 2 small tomatoes chopped
- 1 large or 2 small potatoes
- 1 or 2 Eggplants
- 1 tbsp. Chili-garlic paste
- Red Chili Powder and Salt as per taste
- Pav Bhaji Masala (which you can get from the market)
- ¼ cup boiled peas
- Chopped coriander for garnishing
- First of all, dice the cauliflower, eggplant, and potatoes and cook them in a pressure cooker with a little amount of water until 3-4 whistles. After they’re done, mash them. Here you could also add other vegetables like carrot and cabbage.
- Now, take a frying pan and add oil/butter to it. Add a few cumin seeds and let it pop. After that, add the Chili-garlic paste and sauté it. To it, add onion and stir until it gets pink in color. Then add tomatoes.
- Once the tomatoes seem to be cooked, add Pav Bhaji masala, red chili powder, and salt as per taste. Add a minimal amount of water and let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
- After that, add the boiled and mashed vegetables to it and mix it well and let it cook until the vegetables absorb the flavor. Lastly, add the boiled peas and garnish it with fresh coriander.
Assembling the Pizza
Once the topping, i.e., Bhaji, is done, choose a thick crust base of your choice. You can go for a regular pizza base. If you’re using a store-bought base, you can directly apply the topping cooked and add your choice of cheese on top of it. You can either cook it on a pan by covering it or heat it in the oven until you see the cheese melting.
If you’re making the base from scratch out of fresh dough, you can make it a Bhaji burst Pizza by applying the topping on one base, covering it with another, and sealing the edges properly after that. On top, you can apply pizza sauce or white sauce along with some boiled corn, olives, jalapenos, and cheese. Cook it as per your convenience.
This will give you the best desi pizza. Trying a Bhaji burst pizza would be a great experiment as you can give double flavor to it.
This can be heavily experimental but can turn out best if you like to get the best output out of mixing. To see an easy recipe of samosa, check the following video.
After the samosas are ready, there would be a need to make either a green or red chutney as per your choice.
For Green Chutney
In a mixer bowl, add fresh coriander and green chilies. The amount of coriander to chilies should be 1:2. To it, add some peanuts. Now, add salt and lime juice as required and grind it. If you find the chilies too spicy and want a sweeter taste, add a pinch of sugar to it, and the green chutney for our desi pizza is ready. Add a little water if required, but do not make it too liquidy. Let it be coarse.
For Red Chutney
Boil a few tomatoes and peel off its skin. Remove its eye portion and add them to a mixer grinder jar. Add a few garlic cloves. Add salt and red chili powder as per taste.
Making the Pizza
Once the chutney of your choice is ready, take a pizza base and apply a generous coat of chutney over it. Now, break your samosa into small paneer cube-like size and top the pizza. Garnish the pizza generously with cheese of your choice and heat it until the cheese melts. Your yummy desi pizza would be ready to dig in.
A Pesto Pizza
This can be a great and trusted desi pizza option if you do not want to be experimental. You can cook a creamy pesto sauce with spinach or basil whichever is available. To the sauce, you can add barbecued vegetables and paneer and top your pizza. You could also boil the rice and cook a Hyderabadi biryani with pesto sauce and use it as a topping. Instead of cheese, you can use fresh cream as the end garnishing.
A Saag Paneer Pizza
There’s a restaurant in Michigan, which serves this pizza. Indians are very well known of Makki Di Roti and Sarson da saag combination. But the non-Indians would not know about that. So, this restaurant combines the two to make a desi pizza. It is also seen that the butter chicken desi pizza and aloo gobi pie pizza are loved by the people there and are the best-selling ones.
An Indian veggie desi pizza can be made with vegetables like eggplant, spinach, cauliflower, ginger, and garlic. An Indian Non-Vegetarian desi pizza can be made with a combination of tandoori chicken, lamb, and cilantro. There have even been experiments of using dal makhani, which is a creamy lentil and presented it in the form of pizza.
A Papad Chaat Pizza
Papad is like crisps that are available in the market and can be fried or roasted. On it, a topping of coarsely crushed peanuts mixed with thinly chopped onions, tomatoes, bell pepper, and chaat masala and red chili powder or oregano and chili flakes can be added for flavor. Finally, garnish it with coriander or cheese.
You could also mix up a variety of soaked sprouts, which are then tied in a damp cloth to let them grow. You will just have to add chaat masala, lime juice, and fresh coriander to it. You could top this over any Indian flatbread and sprinkle some cheese and heat it.
So, with Indian recipes and ingredients, you can come up with lots of desi pizza variations which can be twisted to make a great hybrid of pizza. And once you get fond of such desi pizza, there would not be any turning back and only new experiments would be done as it will be a power pack of lots of flavors in one.