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Christmas Tree Pizza Dough Balls

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree, how lovely are thy cheese pulls! Turn on your festive cheer with these Christmassy, doughy balls of joy: our Christmas Tree Pizza Dough Balls are smothered in garlic-herb butter and served with pizza sauce for dipping. Wow your guests with this super simple and fun recipe!

Ingredients 
Serves 6-8 as an appetizer

800g (28.2oz) Classic Pizza Dough
200g (7oz) Classic Pizza Sauce
250g (8.8oz) mozzarella cheese block, chopped into 1” cubes
150g (5.3oz) butter, melted
4 cloves garlic, crushed
3 tbsp parsley, finely chopped
3 tbsp rosemary, finely chopped

Equipment
1 large baking pan (max. 13” x 9”/33 x 23cm)
3-inch cookie cutter (or tumbler)
1 rolling pin

Method
Prepare the pizza dough ahead of time. Our guide to making the perfect Classic Pizza Dough covers everything you need to know. Note that for this recipe, it’s not necessary to ball up the pizza dough – simply follow the recipe up until the bulk proving stage, so you end up with one large quantity of proved dough ready to roll out and turn into the dough balls.

Fire up your Ooni pizza oven. Aim for 250˚C (480F˚) on the stone baking board inside. You can check the temperature inside your Ooni pizza oven quickly and easily using the Ooni Infrared Thermometer.

Take a tablespoon of the butter and spread over the surface of your baking pan.

Next, lightly flour your work surface. Using a rolling pin, flatten the pizza dough out to about 2 inches thick. Take your cookie cutter and punch a circle from the dough. Place a cheese cube in the centre of the circle and pinch the edges of the dough together to seal. Roll the dough with your palms (like forming a meatball) to form a smooth ball. Repeat with each circle of dough. You should be able to make around 21-25 balls. Make one smaller dough ball to use as the star on top of the tree!

Place the dough balls on the baking sheet in the Christmas tree shape, and drizzle a few tablespoons of melted butter over the dough balls.

Place the baking tray inside your Ooni pizza oven and bake the dough balls for 20-25 minutes, or until they’re puffed up and golden all over. Be sure to rotate the tray every few minutes to ensure it cooks evenly and doesn’t burn.

In a bowl, mix the garlic and herbs with the rest of the melted butter.

Remove the tray from the oven and drizzle the dough balls with the garlic-herb butter. Serve while hot, with a bowl of warm pizza sauce for dipping the balls into!

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