If there’s one thing you take away from this post, it’s this: pizza is good.
There are people who will tell you it isn’t. There are folks who demonize it, bitch about the cheese or the amount of carbs. There are people who claim it’s greasy & unhealthy or who say things like “Wow, look, a heart attack on a plate.” Those people aren’t your friend. Sure, they disguise themselves as “friends.” But really, anyone who tries to tell you that pizza is bad is a horrible person.
Pizza isn’t bad. Pizza isn’t at fault.
People who eat pizza four times a day, every day, and eat themselves obese? They’re at fault. Those people who don’t get any exercise, eat crappy diets & then get sick & blame cheeseburgers or pizza? It still doesn’t make pizza- or burgers- the bad guy. Pizza isn’t an every day, all day meal. Neither are cupcakes. Or ice cream. Or cheeseburgers. And if you can’t understand that, and you’re blaming food, then honestly you need to sit down & re-examine your life. STOP BLAMING FOOD. STOP LABELING THINGS LIKE BREAD AS “BAD.” BREAD IS NOT BAD. You are bad for food shaming people. YOU are the asshole. By telling people to stop eating carbs or fats or sugar altogether you aren’t educating them in a good diet, you’re making them feel bad. Not to mention spreading false nutritional information, because since when has one or two slices of pizza- or even a whole pie, really- made anyone fat? Never, that’s when.
And let me just say this: one of the things that totally drive me nuts/insane/bananas/bonkers/pick a word about having a food blog that isn’t loaded down with quinoa or gluten-free fad diet stuff are the questions. Ohhh, the questions. Such as…
“Oh mah gah, like how do you NOT weigh 1,000 pounds!?”
“Holy crap if I ate like this I’d be a freakin’ WHALE! How do you stay so skinny?”
“Where do you put all this food??? You’re so thin!”
“Marilla, seriously, how are you able to eat all of this?”
“No really… how is it possible your house is full of delicious treats and you don’t eat them all?”
Have you ever heard of self-control? Moderation? COMMON SENSE? Do you HONESTLY think I eat nothing but cupcakes & pizza four times a day every single day? What planet do you come from? I eat a shit-ton of salads & vegetables, but who the hell wants to read about that? I certainly don’t. Salads are boring. Delicious, yes, but not interesting. Trained monkeys can figure out how to make a good salad, let’s face it, it’s not that hard. Also… these people asking these questions are clearly not food bloggers. Because if they were they’d realize that by the time the food is prepared, cooked & done, the photos are set-up & taken & every one else has eaten, we’re too damn tired to eat or to do anything but nap.
Side note: isn’t it funny I posted ice cream and pizza within a few days of one another? I think so. Junk food done right!
Okay now that that’s out of the way, let’s get into the good, positive pizza talk. ‘Cause everybody loves pizza! Well, unless you’re one of those buzzkills I mentioned above, anyway… but who cares about them?
Being from New York, I especially love pizza. I’m partial to New York pizza, of course, but I do love me some deep dish. Thick, oiled crust, gooey cheese. Oh man. It’s some good stuff. I could live on pizza, really. Although like I said- that’s not exactly feasible… either way, I love it. I also love making my own pizza, as is evidenced by the four or five different recipes I have posted on this blog alone! Making your own dough is not as hard as you think it is, even if you don’t have a stand mixer with a dough hook you can make your own awesome pizza dough.
EASY PIZZA DOUGH RECIPE
Makes two 8″ deep dish cake pan pizzas, one 9″x13″ pizza or 3-4 free form thin crust pizzas
- 5 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 teaspoons active dry yeast (not instant)
- 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 2 cups lukewarm water
- Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. Stir in the yeast, then make a well in the center.
- Add the olive oil and the 2 cups lukewarm water.
- Mix until a soft dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently for 5 minutes.
- Set aside in an oiled bowl and cover the bowl with a clean dishtowel.
How good does that look? Drool-worthy. And EASY. I promise you, it’s very, very easy.
DEEP DISH CAKE PAN PIZZA
- 1 batch homemade pizza dough (if using frozen or refrigerated, thaw & let it come to room temp)
- 2 cups marinara sauce or sauce of your liking, homemade or store-bought (this sauce works well), or, two large tomatoes sliced & patted dry
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese, grated or sliced
- shredded or finely grated parmesan cheese (I used a combination of both)
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- sliced pepperoni, crumbled ground beef, or any toppings of your choice
To make the pizza:
- Preheat the oven to 425° F and get two 8″ cake pans ready.
- Add 3 tablespoons olive oil, 2 teaspoons minced garlic, and 1/4 teaspoon each of dried basil & oregano in a small saucepan. Heat gently until it smells like it’s ready. Turn off the heat & brush the cake pans with it fairly liberally.
- Divide the dough in half. Press each ball into it’s own cake pan. If it springs back too much, let it rest for 5 minutes and try again. Punch & press it into the pan, pushing & pulling the “crust” over the top of the pans by roughly 1/2″.
- Brush the crust part with the olive oil mixture and sprinkled a handful of shredded parmesan and a 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese over the bottom of each of the pizza crusts. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes.
- Remove the pizzas and add the sauce or sliced tomatoes and then the remaining mozzarella cheese, as well as any toppings you might want to add. Sprinkle with more parmesan (I used grated for the tops), add a basil leaf (if desired) and put back into the oven for 15-20 minutes or until sauce is bubbly & crust is golden.
- Remove from the oven and set aside for 10 minutes before cutting. This dough also works when made in a single 9″ x 12″ baking dish or pan for a “Sicilian”-styled pizza. Cooking directions for that pan size can be found here.
I’d avoid using fresh mozzarella for this as it can be too watery and make your pizza too soupy. If you do use it, make sure it’s drained thoroughly & patted dry as much as possible. Also, if you make your own sauce for it, try using fire-roasted tomatoes. I guarantee you you’ll never want to use a regular can of tomatoes again. And be sure to use fresh tomatoes that have been patted dry of all liquid as well, if you aren’t using sauce & you’re taking the fresh tomato option.
Serve with more cheese, preferably while singing “That’s Amore.” Red gingham tablecloth & bottle of chianti with the straw bottom optional.
P.S. the tiki mug giveaway ends TONIGHT at 11:59 p.m. EST! Don’t miss out!