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Homemade pizza made easy

December 09, 2011|Carrie Winchel | Tat Gal Queen City

Do I love pizza?

Why yes, yes I do.

Really, who doesn't like pizza? That's like saying you don't like the Beatles...you can say pizza is overrated, but no one really just hates pizza.

I blame my obsession with the peet-za pie on Book It.  In elementary school, reading a certain number of books got me a free little kid-sized pizza from Pizza Hut.  Yum! Maybe I would read more now, if this program existed for adults.

But I'll spare you the culinary nostalgia; because this is about DIY, Italian style.

Now I'm not knocking delivery or DiGiorno. Frozen pizza is much better than it used to be.

Remember the big cheese discs on cardboard that always burned when you put them in the oven?  Then there was only one good bite on each piece that wasn’t burned, brown cheese? Yeah...life was hard back then.

But delivery gets expensive, and even the good frozen pizzas have some preservatives and junk in them.

So I'm here to show you how to make your very own...homemade pizza! Here’s how it worked for me...

I used this simple recipe for the dough.  It's a wheat dough, but you can find recipes for the "normal" kind too.  Then, I proceeded to make a big ole flour-y mess in the kitchen.  The neat part about making the dough like this is, that you have four portions that you can freeze and thaw for later.

When you're ready...

    * roll out the dough--the fun throw-it-in-the-air thing doesn't really work with the wheat flour in the recipe.
    * I like to brush it with olive oil and pop it in the 425 degree oven for 3-5 minutes before I top it to make sure it's crispy.
    * Sauce: you can buy pizza sauce, but I like to get a small can of Hunt’s Tomato Sauce and spice it up myself with garlic, basil, salt, pepper, and Italian seasonings.
    * Don't forget your top! Toppings, that is. You can do anything!  This thread from ChowHound has some great ideas.  I've done green peppers, mushrooms, roasted red peppers, chicken, spinach, sun dried tomatoes, or Canadian bacon.  Not all on one pizza, by the way. And don't forget the cheese!
    * Bake at 425 degrees for 10-15 minutes.
    * Enjoy!

"But what to I bake it on?!" You ask, "Alas, my home has no brick pizza oven...whatever shall I do?!"  That's a little dramatic, but, okay. I have to plug my Pampered Chef Round Stone...mine is old, so it doesn't have the nifty handles.  Which means I have to ask my husband to take it out of the oven for me because I am a pansy...but it cooks pizza beautifully.

You could just as easily use a regular pizza pan or even a cookie sheet, but it probably won't need to bake as long.

So there it is.  I am by no means a master chef, but I'm having fun trying to cook things that I thought were too hard or complicated for me, and I'll share a recipe here every once in awhile.

Let me know how the pizza making goes!

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