Sure, I talk a lot about pizza, and I am often critical of it. So when our friend Mo suggested we try making some pizzas, I thought I’d try putting my money where my mouth is. I discovered something important: I’m much better at discussing other peoples’ pizza than creating my own.
We started with the sauce; Mo blended up some canned tomatoes and we added garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Mo had gotten some pizza dough from a friend, both regular and whole wheat. Mo had also picked up some dough from a pizzeria, but it turned out to have been sitting in the fridge for too long and was unusable. Mo quickly (and professionally) rolled out the first chunk of dough. We all agreed that we should go simple with our first effort, and so we constructed the following:
That’s sauce, mozzarella, basil, thinly sliced onions, a little sea salt and some olive oil. Of course, the single greatest obstacle to any home pizza maker is not having an oven that gets hot enough (unless you’re this guy). We turned up the oven as high as we could and let the pizza cook while we tried working with the whole wheat dough. The results of that first pizza:
Here’s where I personally ran into some trouble. Despite my best efforts, I couldn’t get the whole wheat dough to roll out smoothly or in the proper shape. I ended up going for a rectangular pizza shape, because that’s what was happening with the pizza dough anyway. As Mo tried a few more toppings I decided to go for a white pizza, topped with mozzarella, olive oil, some fresh basil, some chopped olives, and plenty of sea salt. I call it “the Monstrosity” for obvious reasons.
Too salty and dry, it wasn’t terrible but it certainly wasn’t pizza.
Luckily we made two more pizzas, and we got closer to our ideal on the final try. The dough was the right crispy texture, and the sauce had the right amount of saltiness to it.
I think the lesson I learned was to leave the pizza making to the professionals. I like pizza way too much to ruin it like this again.