New Blog and Site!

I’ve been in the process of migrating my website to .NET, and moved the blog from opensourcepizza.com/blog to blog.opensourcepizza.com. It’s taken me a bit of time to get the new site in place and working, with the correct paths and redirects in place. But I think it all should be working now. Sorry for the inconvenience and any broken links!

Here’s one of my latest creations! I liked the crust texture, but my homemade sauce was too acidic.
Pizza on 4-18-14

Pizza Hut – Great Again!

We had Pizza Hut tonight, and it was great as always! We always get the pan crust, which is a bit thick. It seems to be cooked in oil which makes it greasy but great in my opinion! We got 3 larges each for $10 in their current deal of Any pizza for $10. One was pepperoni, sausage, and tomato. Another was pepperoni, mushroom, and green pepper. And the other was half cheese, half pepperoni (for the kids). I was a little late taking some pics, they were almost half gone already!

PH-pepp_mush_greenpepp

PH-meats

(The half cheese one was underneath the others, so I didn’t take a picture. But the slices looked huge!)

Pizza Hut Thick or Thin Crust?

We always order the Pan crust from Pizza Hut. It occurred to me that it may be a bit thick for my taste (the bottom crust, not the cornicone around the edge). When the bottom crust is too thick, it just fills you up on dough and crust rather than the toppings! But I don’t like very thin crust either, the ‘cracker-thin’ crust is too easily burnt and is too crispy! What do you think?

Pizza Hut side profile

Pizza Hut side profile

Leb’s Pizza House – Ostrander, OH

Today we just went to the 3rd annual car and bike show in Ostrander, OH and had lunch at Leb’s Pizza House, which was on the main street with the show cars right in front. Since it’s a small town, they weren’t equipped to handle so many people today, so service took a very long time. We ordered mac & cheese bites for the kids; it came out pretty quickly, which was good. Then we ordered the Pepperoni Supreme which had double layer of pepperoni and double cheese, and the friends who were with us ordered two other pizzas. We were probably waiting at least an hour before it came out, but we had heard to expect to wait. But it finally arrived, looking great and nice and hot. I didn’t take a picture while we were there, but we had enough to take home, and here’s a shot after it was in the fridge a while.

Pepperoni and Cheese Pizza

Napkin Blot Faux Pas

It was pretty good! Cheesy, pepperoni under the cheese so it didn’t get burnt. The sauce and crust were good too. Overall it was very greasy, and although I like a little greasiness, this was almost too much. Also the cheese was sliding around the crust, I think if they use a dough dressing that may prevent the cheese from sliding around. My husband did the pizza-napkin-blot to remove excess pizza oil (for him and the kids), and I kind of cringe when I see that. Although I would agree that this pizza did have a bit too much. Then when I got home, there was an article in my email about it – a poll on What pizza practices are unacceptable? It says that many consider the napkin blot a faux pas. What do you think?

500 Pizza and Flatbread Recipes

For Christmas I got the book 500 Pizzas & Flatbreads that I put on my Amazon Wish List.

I’ve only read the beginning introduction so far, it has a small but informative reference on the equipment, ingredients, and basic preparation and cooking techniques for making pizzas. Then it goes right into the pizza recipes. They’re divided into several categories: Pan pizza, thin crust, flatbreads of the Americas, dessert pizzas, and international pizzas around the world.

Like any recipe book, it’s a great reference if you’re looking for something new to try. I’m not sure if I’m ready for some of the ethnic dishes, but I’ll have to take a look at making flatbreads and how making the crust differs from a traditional crust. It has different recipes and techniques for making thick crust, calzones, or flatbread crust. There are also a few bread recipes in here too, and plenty of ones I can’t even pronounce! Can’t wait to try one out.

Pizza Lab – Science of the Sauce

The Slice at Serious Eats website has some great articles that explain the science and details about some of the fundamentals of pizza. The one I’m reading now is about New York Pizza Sauce. I always use the same sauce recipe I found from Cooks website, but it never has tasted quite right. The Serious Eats article is a good resource for learning about the different ingredients (olive oil versus butter, crushed tomatoes versus tomato puree, dried herbs versus fresh) that make a good sauce. Of course everyone has their own preferences for how a sauce should taste (should it be sweet or spicy?).
pizza sauce

Some of the things I’ve learned already is that it’s OK to use canned tomatoes rather than rely on the freshness of the ones found at a store, and dried herbs do just as well as fresh if you cook them long enough to bring out the flavor. Except for basil which should be added fresh, a sprig added at the beginning and taken out at the end.

I’ll have to keep reading and use some of these tips for my next sauce!

Pizza T-Shirts and Clothing

I found a few clothing items on Amazon today related to pizza. I may buy one to wear when I make Open Source Pizza video posts! I recorded my first post, but I still have to edit and publish it. I’m thinking one of these two:

But I found a few pizza costumes that are quite funny!

Which is your favorite one? Do you have any pizza clothing??

Taco Pizza – Kraft Recipe

I get emails from Kraft foods with recipe ideas, and today they had one for Taco Pizza. Have you tried a taco pizza before? How is it? I would think it can be tricky to get the right sauce and crust that goes well with taco flavoring.

Recipe

This one calls for ground beef, Taco Bell seasoning, lettuce, tomato, ready to use pizza crust, and Mexican style shredded four-cheese blend with a touch of Philadelphia, which I assume means sour cream. But why doesn’t it clarify?? It has an average of 4 and a half stars with 155 reviews so it sounds like most people like it. You can drizzle salsa on top to add a little more moisture.

25 Healthy Pizzas

Technorati Code: WUFX6U9RHUEM

I was browsing some articles on Serious Eats and someone posted a link to 25 Healthy Pizza slideshow on Cooking Light.com. The navigation is quite nice – you can click the next or previous buttons to see a short description of each one, then click a link for the recipe of one you like. When you click for the recipe it goes to MyRecipes.com.

I’m not sure what makes them healthy. They do provide nutritional information on MyRecipes.com. One is Bacon, Tomato, and Arugula Pizza and the bacon adds quite a bit of fat. There are a few seafood ones: Garlicky Clam Grilled Pizza and Smoked Salmon Thin-Crust Pizza. I’ve never tried one with seafood except an occasional anchovy that mistakenly was added to my pizza. Next time I’m feeling adventurous I might have to try one. The Pepperoni Deep-Dish Pizza appeals to me; I like Chicago-style pizzas. But it has more fat than the bacon one! Does pepperoni have more fat than bacon? The Veggie Grilled Pizza is not as low-fat as I would have guessed, but it’s a great way to add more veggies to your diet! What do you think about these recipes?

Perforated Pizza Pan and Pizza Screen

Continuing my posts on tools used to make pizza, another type of pan used is a perforated pizza pan. I picked one up on Amazon and gave it a try. Supposedly it allows more heat to reach the pizza than a typical solid pan, but not as much as a pizza stone which allows for great heat conduction and moisture loss due to its porous nature. Many small holes or fewer larger holes in the pan will allow more moisture to escape. This means that the bottom of the crust will become crispy. Depending on whether you like crispy crust, this may or may not appeal to you. I can be wary about thin crispy crusts; I don’t like ones that are so thin they have no taste or are too tough or chewy. I can imagine that it’s easy to overcook the crust if you have too many holes in the pan.

Pizza Screens

Another type of pan is a pizza screen (left). While the perforated pan has larger holes, the pizza screen will have tons of smaller holes without much space between them. I believe the larger holes allow more moisture to leave, resulting in a crisper crust than the screen (even though the screen has more holes). I haven’t used a screen yet to find out. I believe you can also use special screens directly on a grill to cook your pizza. We have one but haven’t tried it out yet either.

Anti-stick Agent

I used shortening on the perforated pan to make sure the pizza did not stick. Just used a paper towel to spread it around. I was afraid using olive oil would be messy and wasteful as it flows out of the holes! Of course a spray can with olive oil would be the next logical idea. Shortening was also messy — you’ll definitely need to clean up afterwards! I like the taste of oil-cooked pizzas from restaurants, but I haven’t mastered the technique yet. I tried it in my deep-dish or regular pan, and it adds a little too much moisture rather than adding to the flavor.

Results

I cooked with my perforated pan a few months ago and here is a picture. The crust wasn’t too bad, and you can see I don’t usually go for thin crust pizzas :-) Click the picture to see more on my Flickr account.

pizza from perforated pan