Shut the Fork Up

Sunday, January 29, 2012
I know that people everywhere will scream in horror and outrage when I admit this but ... I eat my pizza with a fork.  Yes, it's true.  I'm a forker.

It all started when I was a kid.  You see, we almost never had take out pizza or went out for pizza.  We grew up on small military bases around Canada and frankly, the options were severly limited.  The only pizza place I really remember from my childhood is Pizza Delight **, a restaurant in Chatham (now Miramichi), New Brunswick. They had amazing pizza and at the time we were out east, it was square.  OMG delicious.  Other than that, we made our own pizza at home.

When I say we "made" our own pizza, I have to admit, it wasn't from scratch.  It was the 70s and 80s, and convenience boxed and frozen foods were the norm.  Make it from scratch?  You must be mad!  My parents were big fans of Kraft's Pizza Kit; a box which included the dough mix, a can of unbelievable delicious sauce (I could stick a straw in it and just drink it like gravy), a little sachet of herbs/spices and a package of grated parmesan cheese.  Dad was the master dough maker and us kids piled it high with toppings which at any given time included hamburger (which should never go on pizza), bacon, salami and pepperoni, pineapple, and canned mushrooms (eeeew grossy gross).

Perhaps my parents made me eat with a knife and fork but I doubt it; I have images of my family picking up and eating their pizza with their hands.  I found it easier to pick off all the toppings and eat them first before tackling the flavour filled crust.  This was my favourite part.  I've always been a bread girl so its really no surprise.  Crust and sauce - pure and simple.  Like a margherita pizza with the cheese removed.  Does this make me a freak? Perhaps but before you judge me, let me give you further insight into my pizza madness...

Take out and frozen pizzas are a whole other ballgame.  I do NOT eat all the toppings first and then the crust.  A bite of non-homemade pizza includes cheese, crust, sauce and toppings.  However, I still eat it with a fork and knife.  Why?  I don't like messy fingers when I eat.  Dripping grease, cheese, and sauce from my fingers or having it slop all over my face?  No thank you.  All of my senses cry out against such a horrific, uncivilized way of eating.  While it means I can never show my face in New York (or share a slice with Jon Stewart), I proudly admit that that I eat with a fork and knife.

Now, shut the fork up and enjoy these pictures of the pizza I made (from SCRATCH) today for lunch.  I used this recipe for the crust, and made my own sauce (tomato paste, water, spices), and topped with zucchini, sauteed onions and peppers, pineapple, and mushrooms on Mom's half.  Why does anyone bother with take out pizza anymore? 

The crust was disappointing.  I wondered about the instructions when I first read it - 350 degree oven?  That seemed very low.  The pizza mixes we used to make were always baked at 425 for the same length of time.  Needless to say the crust was undercooked so back in the oven it went, at a higher temp.  Sadly, even that couldn't save it - it was very light and airy, fluffy even.  Too much like bread.  WTF?  Why can't I find a pizza dough recipe that works for me?  Oh well, the search continues. 


Wandering Coyote said...

Didn't I hook you up with my fave pizza dough recipe at one point?

This is it:

350 is way too low. I cook mine at 400F at minimum. Also, I highly recommend a pizza stone.

Karen said...

I thought you had too but couldn't find it in my files.

I was considering a pizza stone but all the info I found on them said you had to heat them first and then add the pizza to it. Everyone seems to say you need a pizza paddle which I'm worried would cost more than the stone itself!!! Argh. Do you use one?

Wandering Coyote said...

I do have a stone but you don't need a paddle. Here's what I do. I put the stone in the oven when I put the oven on, because, yes, you have to heat it up first. I then roll out my dough and put it on a piece of parchment paper on the underside of a baking pan. Add toppings. When the oven is heated, just slip the pizza from the pan onto the stone, parchment and all. When the pizza is done, you just grab the edge of the parchment and slide the pizza onto a cutting board or the pan or whatever. No paddle necessary! And if the parchment is still in good shape, you fold it up and reuse it for the next pizza.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

I eat my pizza with a knife and fork too. I thought everybody did!

Try substituting some whole wheat flour and some corn meal for about 2/3 of the white flour, and definitely bake at 400 or 425.

mister anchovy said...

1. I agree, cook it hotter.
2. You guys are funnin' me with this eat it with a knife and fork business, right? Next you're going to tell me you don't wash it down with a cold brew. Clearly you need to pre-drink a beer or two before starting to eat pizza. This will help you with this knife and fork business.
3. I also sometimes add corn meal to my crust.

Karen said...

Thanks guys! All great suggestions :)

Milla said...

A) Frozen pizza is frozen pizza, it's not pizza.

B) I eat my pizza with a fork and knife too, and I'm Italian!

Word verification: "nomm it" ahahhahaha

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