Pizza Napoli with Anchovies

A simple tomato sauce with anchovies and capers give this easy pizza its big flavor.

Pizza Napoli with Anchovies

At home we often make Pizza Napoli, which is what we call a Margherita pizza topped with anchovies and capers. This pizza is often called a different name or it may come with black olives as well as the anchovies.

I prefer a very fresh tasting, barely cooked tomato sauce like you find on pizzas in Italy and will only use San Marzano tomatoes, or Pomi or Mutti brands. With a pizza this simple, the ingredients are extra important, so you need to use top quality anchovies and salted capers. We ordered a case of Sicilian anchovies online that we use on this pizza, but you can use any flavorful anchovies you prefer. As for cheese, I change my mozzarella depending on how many pizzas I am making. My husband would prefer a fresh buffalo mozzarella for his pizza and if just the two of us are having pizza I will use it, but if I am making 12 pizzas it would be way too expensive to use buffalo mozzarella so I simply use a regular mozzarella that I grate or slice.

Pizza Napoli with Anchovies

Being true pizza lovers, we have been experimenting with our dough for years. Although I am very happy with my present dough recipe, I have been testing it with healthier grain flours over the past year. If you prefer, you can use spelt or whole wheat flour in place of the all-purpose flour. If you cannot find pizza flour or tip “00” flour, you can use 4 cups of all-purpose flour. Feel free to use my suggested pizza dough recipe, or use a store bought pizza dough that you like. I do use a pizza oven to cook our pizzas which takes less than two minutes for each pizza, but you can certainly cook good pizza in your oven on a pizza stone as well.

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Pizza Napoli with Anchovies
A plain tomato sauce, anchovies, and capers give this simple pizza its big flavor.
Recipe Type: Main, Starter, primi
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 2 personal pizzas
For The Dough: (Makes About 4 Balls)
  • 2 Cups Pizza Flour (00 Type Flour)
  • 2 Cups All-purpose
  • 1 Tablespoon Instant Yeast
  • ½ Cup Dry White Wine
  • ½ to ¾ Cup Warm Water
  • 2 Teaspoons Fine Sea Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil (Plus More For Oiling Bowl & Top of Pizza)
  • 1⅓ Cups Prepared Quick Tomato Sauce
  • 3 Cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
  • 8 to 10 Small Anchovies
  • 2 Tablespoons Salted Capers, Rinsed
  • 1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
  • Coarse Sea Salt
  • Pinch Chili Flakes (Optional)
  1. For the dough, early in the day, mix together the two flours in a large bowl along with the white wine, yeast, salt, and olive oil.
  2. Slowly add in the warm water, stirring as you go until the dough comes together in a ball.
  3. Dump the ball out onto a lightly floured surface and using your hands, knead with your hands until the dough is very smooth, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  4. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl covered with plastic wrap and let double in size, about 1½ hours.
  5. Divide the dough up into 8 ounce portions, rolling each in a ball.
  6. Place two of the balls on a lightly oiled plate and cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until needed. (Dough can be made up to 48 hours ahead of time)
  7. Wrap the extra remaining dough in plastic wrap and freeze for future use.
  8. Remove the dough balls from the refrigerator 2½ hours before needed, allowing them to completely come to room temperature before using.
  9. Preheat your oven to the highest setting (usually 500 degrees F.).
  10. For Each Pizza: On a lightly floured surface, use your hands to press your dough out to a 12 inch circle.
  11. Lightly cover a baking sheet (or pizza peel if using a pizza stone) with cornmeal, and place the dough on top.
  12. Lightly brush the outer edges of the pizza with olive oil, and spread the tomato sauce over the dough, leaving a 1-inch border.
  13. Scatter the mozzarella cheese over each pizza, leaving that 1 inch border clear.
  14. Arrange half the anchovies and capers over each pizza.
  15. Sprinkle the oregano, chili flakes (if using) and sea salt over the pizzas, then bake each pizza until bubbly and golden brown, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  16. Slice & enjoy!


Deborah Mele

Deborah Mele is a self-taught cook whose passion for Italian cuisine began after living in Milan, Italy for 8 years. Although not Italian by birth, she became a true Italian by heart and palate. Deborah created her Italian recipe blog 12 years ago to share her passion for Italian food. During her various travels throughout Italy, Deborah fell in love with the central Italian region of Umbria so when they retired, Deborah and her husband bought two farmhouses there where they now reside for six months a year and run a farmhouse rental for guests and give cooking classes.

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