Za Za Za Za

18 Aug

I left you last with the pizza dough rising on my countertop. Well, hell, can you guess what I made?!

This here’s a margherita pizza with just basil, olive oil, tomato, and mozzerella. Perfect. Simple. KILLER.

And this puppy’s got Hempler’s pork sausage (No nitrates = possibly less chances of cancer! But probably not because everyone is doomed already!!!), artichoke hearts, basil, crimini mushrooms, tomato sauce, and mozzerella. Plus some red pepper flakes because I like things spicy sometimes. I love making pizza because the dough is dirt cheap to make and a cinch, and you can throw on pretty much any toppings you have lying around your house.

Easy Pizza Dough based off of How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman

3 cups flour
2 tsp. salt
about 1.5 cups water
1 tsp. rapid-rise yeast
2 Tbs olive oil

Combine the flour, yeast, olive oil, salt, and a cup of the water in a large bowl. Mix it all up and get it so that it’s no longer a stretchy, sticky, gluey mess. I’ve never been able to figure out how to do this with a spoon, so after I stir up the initial watery dough I tend to ditch the utensils and mash it together with my hands for a few minutes. If it’s just not coming together, add some water a little at a time until all the ingredients have pretty well blended and it’s looking like a fairly cohesive chunk of dough. Take it out and knead it for 5-7 minutes, until it’s a good solid ball and it’s not too sticky anymore (a little stickiness is good, though). Grease up the inside of a fresh bowl with some olive oil and let the dough rise in there. Cover the top of the bowl with a damp towel and set the bowl some place warm to speed up the process. Theoretically the dough should rise into a big, puffy ball, but let’s be honest, I DON’T KNOW WHAT I’M DOING SO THAT’S NEVER ACTUALLY HAPPENED TO MY DOUGH.

Regardless, after an hour or two I punch down the dough and pretend it was a necessary step (who knows!?) and then let it rise for another 20 minutes or so. Then I rip the ball in half and form two small pizzas on cookie sheets coated in olive oil. Top them with whatever weird crap you’ve left festering in your fridge that you want to salvage, or, if you’re feelin’ rich, try going grocery shopping like a respectable adult.  My oven runs hot and unevenly, so I cook my pizzas at 400 for 15 minutes or less, rotating once in an attempt to coax my oven into cooperation. Typically you’d cook them at a higher temperature and for less time, but whatever works for you. Just make sure to check the bottom of the pizza once or twice while cooking to make sure they’re not burnt to hell. Then you feed them to the hungry man on your porch and listen to music and drink wine and sweat out your ears in the summer weather and swear off any and all cooking that involves ovens and/or stovetops until winter arrives.

Except that’s impossible and totally unrealistic, so whatever. I’ll inevitably continue my run as a rapid kitchen monkey regardless of the season. THE END.

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