Personalized Pizza

Yesterday we were off the usual schedule, one of those days where you know dinner won’t happen until late.

While cruising the generous aisles of ShopRite (which was surprisingly empty for 6pm on a Saturday) we settled on a homemade pizza.

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We almost always do a white pizza, the sauce just seems unnecessary sometimes.

I started by preheating the pizza stone. I can’t express enough the difference a pizza stone can make for your at home pizza making experience. But don’t forget to preheat it, crucial. I usually pop it in the preheating oven while prepping everything else. Bring the oven up to 400°-450°.

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I sliced up some vegetables (roasted red peppers, broccoli, mushrooms, and baby spinach) while Mister tossed the room temp dough (store bought) with flour, stretching it into pizza shape. I’ll be honest, this process is a mystery thing to me. It’s always done by the man of the apartment and I couldn’t fathom what should happen or how the lump becomes pizza shaped so easily.

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(Blatant excuse to show off my at home manicure)

We plopped evenly distributed ricotta around the dough after a light drizzle of olive oil. Followed by the vegetables and then a generous portion of shredded mozzarella.

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Then we baked it for about 18-20 minutes.

So so so so good. I love homemade pizza, it’s always exactly how you want it. The pizza stone did a great job crisping up the crust.

As a related side note: how do you choose what ingredients to splurge on?

Personally, we’re on a budget. We don’t have the luxury of splurging on high end olive oil or hand pulled mozzarella. But when it comes to items I’ll eat raw, like baby spinach or carrots, I almost always buy organic. Meat is the same category, I buy the best quality I can find in my price range. Eggs are a big issue of debate between me and Mister: I prefer eggs from the CoOp with an identifiably farm relation, while he doesn’t see the point. In his defense he’s coming around to seeing my point. The ideal is local, organic, free range blah blah blah but it can get confusing an expensive fast.

What do you choose and why?

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11 thoughts on “Personalized Pizza

  1. Pingback: New Voices | FUSSYlittleBLOG

  2. You should check out the Fussy little blog post on eggs, the article on Coop eggs versus Stewart’s eggs may convince you that Stewart’s is a great place to buy some of these items to feel good about them and save some money.

    • I’m a big fan of Stewarts products but, my last few trips to Stewarts were nightmares. I’m sure my location is to blame (the closest to me are Quail/Washington or Central/Main). Long lines, no one at the registers. So are the eggs worth the trip in that sense?

      • If you are looking to poach them (AND are willing to look through the expiration dates to pick the freshest carton regardless of size or color), then I say yes.

        And thank you boya for the mention.

  3. I would recommend splurging on the ricotta. Try R&G fresh ricotta. They’re based in Cohoes, and I’ve never had ricotta so smooth and creamy.

    • Susan has a great suggestion. R&G makes some of the best ricotta (and other cheeses) I’ve had locally. Also good is Maplebrook (based out of Vermont). R&G has stands at the Troy and Schenectady farmers markets, but I’ve seen both from time to time at The Meat House in Stuyvesant Plaza (now known as Primal, I think).

      My cousin and I taught a scratch pizza class at Different Drummers Kitchen back in January, and one of the things he and I were debating during our prep was cooking supermarket pizza dough on a stone. We both agreed that they’re usually way too elastic to stretch enough to benefit from the direct contact of the stone, and usually work better when you’re baking in a pan (with plenty of oil!).

      When you have a little more time, I highly recommend making dough from scratch. With a simple Neopolitan pizza dough (4 ingredients – flour, yeast, salt, and water), and by cranking the temperature on the stone in your oven, you can churn out amazing pizza; the only real expense will be your toppings, and, even with top of the line everything else, it’ll turn out relatively inexpensive.

      • Thanks for the tips! After taking two of Chef Gio’s classes and reading some of the local blogs I feel like I need to bury my head in shame over the store bought dough…I swear I’m going to try homemade dough next time!! Would you be sympathetic enough to share your recipe?

    • Why splurge on the ricotta when it’s so easy to make yourself? I mean really, really easy. Like stupid easy. Plus, you get to enjoy this freshest of fresh cheeses when it’s still slightly warm.

      http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/homemade_ricotta_cheese/

      I say splurge on the things that delivery a large amount of flavor and aroma when used in very small amounts. What that is will depend on what dishes you like to cook. For me, even when money was tight, there was always room in the budget for Parm-Reg.

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