Sunday, July 8, 2012


Traditions.  Every family has them.  Most of them change through the years as the family ages, children grow up and start their own families and traditions.  My family had their own odd little quirks.  One of my favorites was Saturday night Pizza night.  My mom holds the title for greatest pizza ever.  She made her own pizza dough.  The marinara sauce was made from scratch, she would cut up fresh onions, peppers & tomatoes, cube up some thick slices of ham and turkey, fry up some sausage or hamburger, and it would get topped with freshly grated mozzarella cheese.  YUM! 

The second meal I ever baked for my husband when we had just started dating was a veggie pizza.  He was scared that he wasn't going to like it, he thought he wasn't a huge fan of veggies...I just had to fine tune his palet a little bit :)  I've made pizza several times in the past year, it's definitely not an every week occurance like my mom used to do though, but it's always a huge hit with the husband and the in-laws when I do!

First you pull out your handy dandy recipe book.  If you were my mom you wouldn't need your recipe any more...but I'm a slacker and don't use it enough to have it memorized.

 After you mix up your dough, spray a bowl down with some pan so your dough doesn't stick to the sides when it rises. I'll either cover the bowl with some plastic wrap, a towel, or if it's hot like it was yesterday, I put the lid on my Pyrex bowl and put it in the sunshine on my back porch! While your dough is rising you'll want to start prepping your toppings.

I usually use whatever veggies I have in my fridge.  Last night I ended up using onions, red peppers, mushrooms, zucchinni, tomatoes, & some left over chicken.  If I had fresh spinach I would have added that as well.  Because I like to be sweet to my husband, I put everything in a saute pan and saute the veggies down.  I added salt, pepper, garlic powder, italian seasoning & basil to the veggies to give it some added flavor.  But you wouldn't have to saute them if you like your pizza veggies to be on the crunchy side!

After the veggies cook down I strain them to get the extra juices out so I don't have a watery pieces.  Ps. if you don't have a collaspable strainer I would HIGHLY recommend it!  I love mine!

While the veggies were cooking I sliced up some fresh garlic to layer over the top of the pizza.

After my dough has doubled in size I plop it down onto my stoneware.

And then I flatten it out and spread it evenly to the edges of the pan. I use Aldi's spaghetti sauce for my marinara sauce.  It's cheap and it doesn't have any extra additives or preservatives in it which I am always a huge fan of! 

I use the back of a spoon to get it all spread out evenly to the edges of the dough!  After I get the sauce evenly spread I layer on the pepperoni.  This is a very serious matter.  You have to start on the outer edge of the dough and work in a circle around the pizza, placing each pepperoni hugged up close to the last one so that every inch of the pizza is has a pepperoni on it! 

I spoiled my love a little extra last night and cut up some hard salami to it!

After I had put all the meat on my pizza I add the veggies,  (if this were a momma J pizza there would be ham, turkey, and potentially some sausage or hamburger on it) they usually go on top because if you were to put them on the pizza raw they take longer to cook through!  As you can see, after I layered on my sauted veggies, I added my sliced garlic! 

I also added a layer of parmesan cheese before I slid it in the oven for an extra kick!

I set my timer for 12 minutes...

When the timer goes off I load on the mozzerella cheese!  Just becareful to not spill any cheese in your oven, it will sizzle & smoke and you'll have a messy oven to clean out!

And reset the timer for 12 more minutes...and Voila!  Yumminess in my tummy!

My Love told me this was the best pizza I've made yet! He didn't even mind the tomatoes I snuck in the the veggies! 

~Hillary Fay

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