We test out three local DIY pizza kits
We still have a couple of weeks to go before restaurants are allowed to reopen. Some people are chomping at the bit to get back to dining out, while others are a little more cautious. Either way, while you wait for those wood-fired ovens to heat up, some of our most devoted pizza places have worked out how you can still get the finest pizzas in Manchester delivered in kit form so you can finish them off at home. But is it the same?
We take a look at a few to find out how (and if) they work.
Rudy’s have made quite a name for themselves – when they first opened in Ancoats in 2015, people would happily wait for a couple of hours to get their Neapolitan pizza. Then they opened a second outpost on Peter Street - followed by places in Liverpool, Birmingham and Leeds - and were planning on pizza domination until lockdown happened. But like many forward thinking restaurants, Rudy’s have adapted to lockdown life and found another way to get their famous Neapolitan pizzas to the people.
All I had to do was drop an email before midday on the day before I was planning our pizza and beer night. After I’d placed my order I got a phone call to take payment and then I was emailed my receipt.
The pizzas arrived 8am the next day all vacuum-packed in an insulated box. Rudy’s definitely mean business with this venture, with better delivery than Amazon.
When we were ready to cook them, I simply pre heated the oven to 220 degrees, brushed the pizzas with olive oil and then popped them in to the oven for around eight minutes.
Were these pizzas as good as dining at Rudy’s? Well my husband took one bite and declared, “Jesus Christ this is bloody good,” so I knew I was on to a winner.
The charge for delivery is £8 but I’d suggest ordering more than you want and then put spares in the freezer. But for next-day delivery I certainly wasn’t complaining
£6.50 per pizza with four pizzas to choose from; calabrese, margherita, portabello and carne
Skills and tools required
No skills needed, just maybe a pastry brush for oiling the ‘cornichon’ (crust)
Just as good as dining at Rudy’s from the comfort of your own dining room
Dough Re-Me Pizza
Dough-Re-Me Pizza is a new business from chef Ben Hayes, owner of Thyme Out Food Co, an established casual eatery in West Didsbury, and is another venue creating an opportunity whilst surviving lockdown.
Dough Re-Me Pizza provide kits where you can make your own pizza but without the headache of sourdough alchemy. Once ordered, the kits are delivered the next day, ready for dinner.
When the box arrived I could see that this kit had been well-thought-through and the instructions didn’t look too complicated. To start things off you have to let the dough prove for two hours, so read the instructions as soon as it arrives or otherwise dinner will be very late. Then simply shape the dough and stretch it – this was a little daunting but no problem thanks to detailed instructions. Then you put the dough in an intensely hot frying pan for a couple of minutes, place your toppings on it and finish off under a hot grill.
Once done you’ve got restaurant quality Neapolitan pizza. We added some extra toppings as we had some salami left over from a previous meal, but that’s the beauty of making your own pizzas.
The only downside to this kit is you can only make one pizza at a time - unless you have a huge oven - so if you were trying to feed more than two people, timings could become a little awkward.
The charge for delivery is £2.99
£15 for enough ingredients to make two regular-sized pizzas
Skills and tools required
Only skill required is the ability to follow simple instructions and then all you need is a large frying pan, a grill or oven on full blast and a clean work surface
The crusts that developed from the dough were some of the best I’ve had and I was a little put out that I didn’t have any aioli dip to go with them. You could certainly tell that you had prepared this from fresh ingredients – this was definitely not a frozen pizza
Noi Quattro pride themselves on being Manchester’s first Italian-run pizzeria. The four friends, who were behind the much-loved Pasta Factory, expanded their passion for fresh pasta to fresh pizza. All their ingredients are sourced from Italy and the dough they use takes two days to create but only 90 seconds to cook.
For their DIY pizza kit you can order from Deliveroo or Uber Eats or if you can simply drop in and collect it in person – which will give you the chance to browse their marvellous selection of pasta, breads and other Italian treats.
The DIY kit itself was presented well, with easy instructions, and the dough was proved and ready to go.
Because of the dough’s freshness, I struggled to create the first pizza. I should have laid the dough out next to the hob to quickly transfer it to the frying pan without it getting stretched too much, but that’s completely my own blunder. Once I’d prepped better for the second dough it was very easy. I even reckoned I could end up doing some shifts at Noi Quattro...
The Noi Quattro DIY kit was worth the effort. The dough was light and delicate and the tomato sauce was so good, my son declared that he could eat just the pizza base smothered that and nothing else – high praise indeed.
You can collect or, if you are in the delivery area for Ubereats, order through the app
£11 for enough ingredients to make two regular-sized pizzas; for an extra cost, you can then add extra toppings or opt for wholegrain pizza dough
Skills and tools required
Preparation is key to this kit: make sure you know how to transfer the dough to your pan quickly, after that it’s all plain sailing. The only tools required are a hot frying pan and your grill on full heat
These pizzas took me back to my trip to Rome six years ago; the tomato sauce was perfect, plus the Parma ham and Italian sausage extras complemented our pizzas perfectly
To conclude this pizza-at-home round up, I have to say that if you plan ahead for ordering and you put a little effort into prepping your pizzas - why would you ever order another Dominos again? Whichever one of these kits you choose, you won’t be disappointed while you wait for the safe return of dining out.